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08.08.2014, 10:00
Nyström: "Championship vital for players’ development"
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INTERVIEW: Sweden’s coach Ulf Nyström is uncertain where his team stands one week out of the Men’s 18 EHF EURO in Poland, but nevertheless stresses the importance of the tournament
 

Nyström: "Championship vital for players’ development"

Swedish youth teams have produced remarkable performances on the international handball scene recently.

The latest example was the Men’s 20 EHF EURO at which the junior team took silver on Sunday (3 August) last week.

Can we expect a similar effort from the country’s youth team, when they travel to Poland for the Men’s 18 EHF EURO next week?

"Of course, we will be doing our best to produce a good performance and to achieve as good a result as possible," says head coach Ulf Nyström.

"However, when you are dealing with such young players, there inevitably is some uncertainty.

"We simply don’t know the other teams that well yet, and we don’t know yet how we will handle the pressure, but I definitely think we have good chances to reach the top," Nyström tells eurohandball.com.

"We feel well prepared and well equipped, but we have landed in a tough preliminary group with Switzerland, Serbia and Iceland, and our first goal will, of course, be to progress on from that group, before we can say much about our chances at the tournament."

Nyström is really looking forward to going to Poland with his young team.

"Giving these lads the taste of a final championship is crucial when it comes to developing and maturing them, and I’m really looking to see how they will cope with that challenge and that pressure," he says.

Rewarding trip

Sweden have prepared for the European Championship by taking part in a tournament in Portugal at the end of July and the beginning of August.

They defeated Spain 29:28 and Portugal 28:26 before finishing their stay by losing 20:24 against their neighbours and eternal rivals from Norway.

"That was a very rewarding trip for us. We had three great test matches in Portugal, so that trip came in very useful as part of our preparations," says Nyström who sees a lot of potential for the future in his team.

"Obviously, part of our purpose is to develop future players for the senior national team, and I see several players in this team who have the potential to take it that far.

"However, I have been working with young talents for so many years now that I would rather not say which players have the best chances to become senior internationals one day.

"For a great part, it is also a question about the way they work with their own potential and about how ambitious they are.

"There is no doubt in my mind, though, that we are going to see some of these boys in the senior national team one day."

Tournament information

The Men’s 28 EHF EURO takes place in the Polish cities of Gdynia and Gdansk from 14 to 24 August 2014. For more information visit the official website and the event's Facebook page.

During the tournament eurohandball.com and the EHF EURO Facebook page will also feature regular reports, features and photo galleries.

Austria hosted the Men’s 18 EHF EURO 2012. Back then Germany won, Sweden came second and Denmark placed third.


TEXT: Peter Bruun / ts
 
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