Balatonfüred ready to enter the spotlight
Balatonfüredi KSE return to the international competition on the back of last season’s great performance and a bronze medal in the Hungarian championship, booking a direct spot in the EHF European League Group Phase.
However, the changes in the squad during the summer may not favour the club’s plans to reach the knockout stages.
- Balatonfüred qualified for the group phase directly as bronze medallists of the Hungarian league
- this was the third time that they reached the podium in the domestic championship
- two Hungarian national team players left the squad, Pedro Rodríguez and Petar Topic both left for rivals MOL Tatabánya KC
Most important question: Is Balatonfüred’s squad deep enough?
While only two players left the club and six arrived, the squad will have to deal with competing on three fronts this season with the Hungarian league, cup and EHF European League.
In the domestic tournaments, many of their competitors seem to be strengthened and recent seasons have shown just how tough Europe’s second flight is as well. Tamás Bene, Executive Director of the club, understands the challenge that awaits.
“Because of our bronze medal in last year's championship, we can participate in the group phase, which is also a recognition of our success. This year is the 11th time we are participating in international competition, which also means that this year our players can develop.
“Difficult matches await us in the group phase as the European League has become much stronger. We want to play good matches and prepare fairly for each match,” says Bene.
Under the spotlight: Balázs Szöllösi
The 193 cm-tall Hungarian international thrives in the centre of the attack as he has been his side’s top scorer five times in eight seasons.
Although this season has started slowly with two losses and a draw, Szöllősi already netted ten times.
The experienced 29-year-old is one of the club’s longest-serving players, spending all but three of his years at senior level in Balatonfüred.
How they rate themselves
The players have modest ambitions in the EHF European League and recognise the importance of international experience. Team captain László Kemény does not want to put too much pressure on his teammates’ shoulders.
“It is always a great honour to play in the European League, hence we would like to use this opportunity to improve and get into the spotlight in case we advance from the group phase.
“We believe that Flensburg and Füchse Berlin has the biggest chance for winning. For us the aim is to gain the most possible points and of course to acquire the best possible place we can in the domestic championship,” says Kemény.
Did you know?
The city of Balatonfüred is called the capital of the northern side of Lake Balaton and located in Veszprém County, home of the EHF Champions League heavyweights.
Arrivals and departures
Arrivals: Stevan Sretenovic (HC Meshkov Brest) Péter Hornyák (Grundfos Tatabánya), Huba Vajda (Fejér-B.Á.L. Veszprém), Márk Vári (FTC), Máté Klucsik (Balaton-felvidéki Kézilabda Akadémia), László Lovistyek (Balaton-felvidéki Kézilabda Akadémia)
Pedro Rodríguez (Grundfos Tatabánya), Petar Topic (Grundfos Tatabánya)
Participations (including 2022/23): 3
Qualification Round 2 (1): 2020/21
Qualification Round 1 (1): 2021/22
EHF Cup: Group Phase (1): 2014/15
Cup Winners’ Cup: Last 16 (1): 2010/11
Hungarian league: -
Hungarian cup: -