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05.04.2019, 13:41
Your guide to the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 Qualifiers
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OVERVIEW: New world champions Denmark aim to continue their perfect run through the EHF EURO 2020 Qualifiers when rounds 3 and 4 begin on 10 April
 

Your guide to the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 Qualifiers

The 32 teams vying for the 20 remaining places at the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 are set to continue their qualification campaigns when round 3 begins next Wednesday, 10 April. A total of 32 matches will played over the course of the upcoming rounds, with round 3 on 10 and 11 April, and round 4 the following Saturday and Sunday, 13 and 14 April.

  • This is the biggest EHF EURO Qualification Phase since the competition began, with 32 teams aiming to be part of the expanded 24-nation final tournament
  • The 32 teams are split into eight groups of four for the qualifiers, with the top two sides in each group qualifying for the EURO, along with the four best third-ranked teams
  • The three fourth-ranked sides teams with the poorest record at the culmination of the qualifiers will play the relegation round, taking on the winners of phase 1 of the EHF EURO 2022 qualifiers: Cyprus and Luxembourg, as well as the winner of the upcoming Emerging Nations Championship 2019 in Kosovo
  • Rounds 3 and 4 of the EHF EURO Qualifiers will see a series of home-and-away double headers for all teams
  • Simultaneously, the first edition of the EHF EURO Cup will continue, contested between the already qualified reigning title holders Spain and EURO 2020 co-hosts Norway, Sweden and Austria
  • All matches will be streamed live on ehfTV.com

Full schedule
 

Wednesday 10 April

Highlights

  • In group 1, Poland will play their first of the two qualifiers with interim coach Patryk Rombel at the helm
  • The current top scorer of the qualifiers, Andy Schmid – 18 goals, will take the court with Switzerland as they face Belgium away in Leuven
  • Czech Republic are following their strong performance at the EHF EURO 2018, when they recorded their highest ranking in 22 years, with a so-far perfect run through the EURO 2020 qualifiers. The group 5 frontrunners aim to add a third win in as many matches when they meet Belarus in Plzen
  • Four sides who have yet to collect any points will aim to do so on day one of round 3: Kosovo, Turkey, Italy and Slovakia. Italy and Slovakia face each other in a direct clash in group 7
  • Group 8 leaders and newly crowned first-time world champions Denmark aim for their third win in three qualification matches when they take on Montenegro in Podgorica
  • Denmark superstar Mikkel Hansen is even more in the spotlight than he was previously, after he was named MVP at the World Championship, where he was top scorer. The left back also recently won his third IHF World Handball Player of the Year title

Thursday 11 April

Highlights

  • Serbia host Croatia in a classic derby in group 2, aiming for their first win in the qualifiers after drawing against Belgium in their campaign opener then suffering a defeat to Switzerland
  • Lithuania will play their first matches under the guidance of new coach Mindaugas Andriuska. Andriuska’s predecessor Arturos Juskenas stepped down following the side’s two opening losses in the first rounds of EURO Qualifiers
  • EHF EURO 2018 bronze medallists France will travel to Portugal to meet their fellow Group 6 leaders. Both sides enter the clash on four points following two wins each
  • After claiming the World Championship silver medal for the second straight time, Norway will take on EHF EURO 2018 runners-up Sweden in the first match of an EHF EURO Cup double header. The clash will stir painful memories for Sweden, as they met Norway in a decisive World Championship Main Round match in January, losing 27:30
  • In what is their third EHF EURO Cup match, Austria will make their debut with new coach Ales Pajovic as they host Spain in Dornbirn. The Slovenian replaces Patrekur Johannesson, who was let go after Austria did not qualify for the main round at the World Championship in January

Round 4

Highlights

  • Round 4 will see three qualifiers and one EHF EURO Cup match played on Saturday April 13, before the round concludes with a huge day of action on Sunday April 14, when 13 games and one EURO Cup clash will take place
  • On Saturday, Denmark will play their first official match in Copenhagen’s Royal Arena since they opened their clean sweep of the World Championship with a 39:16 win over Chile on January 10
  • Germany will also play their first official game at home since they co-hosted the World Championship together with Denmark. The EHF EURO 2016 winners will welcome Poland in Halle on Saturday

TEXT: Courtney Gahan / ts
 
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