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22.04.2016, 15:29
Spanish-Danish duel for ticket for the Finals
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QUARTER-FINAL PREVIEW: Fraikin BM. Granollers and Bjerringbro-Silkeborg meet in Northern Spain in the first leg of the only international derby in the Men's EHF Cup Quarter-finals.
 

Spanish-Danish duel for ticket for the Finals

While two of the quarter-final ties in the Men's EHF Cup are national derbies – a French and a German derby – the third tie is between a Spanish and a Danish team.

Fraikin BM. Granollers (ESP) vs Bjerringbro-Silkeborg (DEN)
Sunday 24 April, 17:30 hrs local time, live on ehfTV

It has been a long time since Granollers won the EHF Cup twice in a row. That was back in 1995 and 1996, but this season, the Catalan team has the chance to achieve a third triumph in the tournament.

After failing to reach the quarter-finals last year, a second place in Group A was enough for them this season. Now the current number four in the Liga Asobal are ready to take on Bjerringbro-Silkeborg who are back in European handball after two years of absence, their latest appearance being in the Last 16 of the VELUX EHF Champions League in the 2012/13 season.

Winning Group C has given Silkeborg the possible privilege of playing the second leg at home, so the Palau d'Esports of Granollers will be the venue of the first meeting between the two teams who obviously both hope to reach the EHF Cup Finals in Nantes.

Silkeborg's left back Nikolaj Markussen played in Spain for BM Ciudad real for two seasons and knows the opponent better than his teammates. "If we play well, I think that we have a great chance of advancing to the EHF Cup Finals.

"So far in this season, we have played very wisely in the EHF Cup and if we can continue doing that, we have great opportunities. But we are facing a really good team, so we need a top class performance in both matches," says the 212 cm tall shooter.

However, it will be two teams which have rather poor final rehearsals to show for themselves meeting on late Sunday afternoon.

Wednesday, Granollers only got a 30:30 draw at home against number 11 in the Spanish league, BM Guadalajara, while Silkeborg lost 30:28 away against Team Tvis Holstebro in the Danish championship play-offs on Monday.

Silkeborg coach Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen is not sure that finishing at home will be a major advantage for his team in this case.

"Actually, I think Granollers have shown some of their best performances in the EHF Cup this season away and anyway, I see our chances against them as being 50-50;" says the Silkeborg coach, whose team is under pressure in the play-offs for the Danish championship.

"I do think that we can abstract from that and focus completely on the task against Granollers," Peter Bredsdorff-Larsen tells eurohandball.com.


TEXT: Peter Bruun / es
 
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