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30.05.2017, 10:46
Nagy: “Not favourites, but not underdogs either”
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BLOG: Veszprém skipper Laszlo Nagy is back with his blog and tells the story of a long and rugged season which is shaping up to be a great one for the Hungarian powerhouse.
 

Nagy: “Not favourites, but not underdogs either”

Hi handball friends!

Welcome to the latest edition of my ehfCL.com blog.  I hope you are doing fine and getting ready for the thrilling action of the VELUX EHF FINAL4.

Best four
This should be quite a spectacle as I am sure most of you will agree with me when I say the four best teams of the season made it to Cologne in 2017.

It gives me great satisfaction that we are one of the best four teams because there were times this season when even our most loyal supporters questioned whether we could make it to Cologne.

I must admit we had difficult moments due to injuries but I believe overcoming these problems has made us stronger. We knew that most of the autumn was all about survival but we never lost hope that we could be as good as we are supposed to be when the time comes.

Number of matches doubled
We started the season with the biggest squad in our history because we were competing in the Hungarian league, the SEHA – Gazprom League and the VELUX EHF Champions League.

Our squad is not the youngest and we suddenly realised that the 30+ games we had played last year was more than doubled this year. With two games remaining of the season we are already well-beyond 70 matches.

And here we are now.

Veszprém have defended both domestic titles against a very strong Szeged side and we reached the final of the SEHA – Gazprom League, too.

On top of that we are getting ready to take to the court in our fourth consecutive VELUX EHF FINAL4 and hoping to reach our third consecutive final - our most important objective this year.

No longer favourites, yet not underdogs
In the last two FINAL4s everybody told us that we were favourites, yet we had to settle for silver both times. Now we are not the favourites, however, we are not the underdogs either. As I wrote earlier this year there are no favourites and underdogs but four equally strong, skilled and determined sides with the same goal.

It is true, however, that all four of us have different strengths.

For example, our semi-final opponents, PSG have the best attacking potential, while our strength lies in our defence. These clashes are always interesting and we usually play excellent matches against each other.

We may have lost against the French powerhouse at home this autumn but I think it was the best game we played in the first part of the season. We obviously don’t want to finish the season with a 0-3 result against PSG and I hope we have learned from our previous games.

We approach the game with a healthy attitude. We know that PSG will not give us any gifts but we are very positive before our clash.

Most of our key players are battle-hardened veterans who know the atmosphere of these clutch games and revel under pressure. We are now united and determined to finally lift the trophy this team has been after for such a long time.

Relaxed and calm
We are not overly anxious about Cologne. We have had very good training sessions and are trying to be as relaxed as we can be.

Some guys go to the cinema, others prefer reading or listening to music but to me nothing beats the feeling of watching the sun set over Lake Balaton.

I live in Felsőörs, a small village outside of Veszprém, next to the lake, and we have a great view over Balaton.

When I feel I have troubles I just sit out to the porch and watch the beautiful landscape.

I obviously can’t get the FINAL4 out of my thoughts now that the domestic competitions are over but when I am with my family and my dogs I feel I am a very lucky person.

But I also know I have obligations: we finally have to make the best fans in the world happy by winning the most prestigious trophy of all.

That’s it for now, I hope you enjoyed my post.

Take care and see you in Cologne,

Love, Laci


TEXT: Laszlo Nagy, captain of Telekom Veszprém
 
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