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16.11.2015, 17:20
Källman looking forward to seeing old friends
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INTERVIEW: Jonas Källman will be close to the place where he grew up, when Pick Szeged visit Kristianstad Wednesday
 

Källman looking forward to seeing old friends

It has been 13 years since Jonas Källman left Sweden to play handball abroad.

On Wednesday he is back in his homeland, but playing for the away team.

MOL-Pick Szeged visit IFK Kristianstad for the second meeting between the two clubs in less than a week. On Saturday, Szeged won 35:28 at home against the Swedish champions and VELUX EHF Champions League debutants.

To Källman, returning to the southern part of Sweden will be a special experience in more than one sense.

“I was born in Växjö, which is only a half an hour drive from Kristianstad, so I have friends and relatives in the area who will attend the match, so at least, I will have some support among the spectators,” smiles the 34-year-old Swedish international.

“Apart from that, I am not really sure how I will be received by the crowd in the Kristianstad Arena, but I hope that the fact that I play in the national team will at least earn me a bit of applause,” he adds, laughing.

Even though it has been 13 years since he left Sweden, he still recalls how difficult an away court the Kristianstad Arena is.

“I am really impressed by the enthusiasm in that town, and the club is doing a great job by filling the arena for each and every match. No matter whether the matches are Saturday, Sunday or Wednesday, the arena is full, and there is a fantastic atmosphere,” Jonas Källman tells ehfCL.com.

Feeling fine in Hungary

He is also very impressed by his current club, though.

“Pick Szeged is a great club, and it is improving year by year. I feel very well in the club as well as in the city and the country,” explains the experienced left wing, who has been with the club for three and a half year now – and he is not leaving any day soon.

“My current contract with the club is valid until 2019, so I will probably have learned quite some Hungarian by the time!

“I will not rule out the possibility that I may actually end my career here, although I cannot be sure yet. After all, I will be 38 years old, when my contract expires, and of course, I cannot go on forever, so maybe that will be the time where I should consider calling it a day,” says Jonas Källman who recently converted his 600th goal for Sweden.

For Szeged, he has scored 37 in the VELUX EHF Champions League this season, eight of which were scored in the home game against Kristianstad.

That match ended with a clear 35:28 win for Källman and his teammates in Pick Szeged, but still he is cautious ahead of the trip to Sweden.

Crucial match for both sides

Despite the clear win at home, he and the rest of the team were not completely content with their performance.

“There is no doubt that we have to play much better in the away match, not least as it is obvious that Kristianstad can play much better than they did in Szeged.

“It is a crucial match for both sides. Kristianstad need a win in order to maintain their hopes of progressing from the group and we need the two points in our efforts to advance to the fourth or third position in the group.

“However, as I said, I believe we will have to play much better than we did at home in order to even stand a chance in Kristianstad.

“In particular, we will have to improve in our defence, but we will also have to be more focused in our attack and not lose the ball too often, as this will give Kristianstad the chance to run those counter attacks which is such a lethal weapon in their hands.

“We are warned, though. We have seen how great performances Kristianstad made in their home games against Kolding and Rhein-Neckar Löwen, so we realise that playing in the Kristianstad Arena will definitely be no walk in the park,” says Jonas Källman.


TEXT: Peter Bruun / cor
 
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