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Inside the EHF

EHF Executive Committee gathers for final meeting in 2020

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The EHF Executive Committee gathered in Herning, Denmark on Saturday for its final meeting in 2020. The meeting took place on the final weekend of the Women’s EHF EURO 2020.

At the meeting’s core were decisions regarding the club competitions as well as updates related to the current European Championship and several upcoming national team events.

During the meeting the acting president of the European Olympic Committees and the NOC of Denmark, Niels Nygaard, together with the President of the Danish Handball Association, Per Bertelsen, and the DHF Secretary General, Morten Stig Christensen, visited the delegation of the EHF.

An exchange of information took place, with the EHF underlining the excellent cooperation during the Women’s EHF EURO 2020 and in particular the DHF’s flexibility in the lead-up to the championship when the Norwegian part of the EHF EURO needed to be moved to Denmark as a consequence of the pandemic.

Women’s EHF EURO 2020

The Executive Committee received a report by the tournament management of Women’s EHF EURO 2020 after 45 out of 47 matches had been played. Special emphasis was laid on the successful implementation of the hygiene protocol. While three cases of Covid-19 were registered at the beginning of the championship, all of them were detected before the respective players, who could subsequently be isolated, entered the ‘red zone’.

The EXEC took note of the agreement between Norway and Denmark as co-organisers of EHF EURO and the consequence that the DHF will be compensated for fulfilling the responsibilities of the Norwegian Handball Federation on Danish soil.

Previous meetings’ reports

In brief, the Executive Committee discussed several reports including those of the EHF Secretary General, the legal report, the minutes of the EHF Court of Arbitration Council meeting in October as well as the latest minutes of the Legal Delegation and the Initiator of Proceedings. Furthermore, at hand were the latest minutes of the EHF Marketing Advisory Board and the General Assembly which had approved the 2019/20 business year of EHF Marketing.

With regards to the report of the Finance Delegation, the Executive Committee was informed about recent adaptations of the 2020 budget which are mainly due to financial support paid out to the federations as part of the EHF’s ‘Back to Handball’ approach in the midst of the pandemic.

From the Commissions and Boards

The Executive Committee received the latest reports from the Competitions, the Methods as well as from the Beach Handball Commission. The EHF took note of a study by Competitions Commission member Carmen Manchado who, in September, had presented first results on position-related covered distances and velocities in offence and defence for each participating nation at the Men’s EHF EURO 2020. The relevant player tracking data for this study was gathered through the EHF’s partnership with Kinexon.

Furthermore, the Methods Commission successfully organised the second module of the EHF Master Coach course virtually in the first week of November. The first ‘European Handball Online Summit’ at the end of October became a huge success with almost 800 people from 58 countries participating.

The Beach Handball Commission informed the EXEC about the planned publication of a first beach handball education book in English. The aim of the project is to create a general book for beach handball to facilitate an easy start for new beach handball countries and coaches. Publishing is expected for November 2021 on the 30th anniversary of the EHF.

The EXEC also took note of the minutes of the October meetings of the Nations Board, the European Handball League Board, the Professional Handball Board and the Women’s Handball Board –  as well as of the accompanying reports of the chairpersons – at which the competition situation, the role of player agents and education compensation were among the core topics discussed.

Possible adaptations to EHF CL playing schedules

The EHF’s Chief Sports Officer Markus Glaser informed the EHF Executive Committee on the current situation of postponed and re-scheduled matches in the EHF Champions League. As of 19 December, 60 of 80 matches have been played in the EHF Champions League Men. Two more are scheduled for the coming days.

Over the past weeks, the EHF has been working on guidelines and procedures in case matches cannot be played until 4 March 2021.

With the information at hand, the EXEC confirmed a possible adaptation of the playing schedules in the men’s and the women’s competition which could see the points of matches that have not been played being awarded and all 16 clubs of the group phase being qualified for the Last 16. It was underlined that a successful re-scheduling of matches and therefore a decision on court remains the prime objective.

The same system regarding point distribution for matches that could not be played as well as for the Last 16 will be introduced in the DELO EHF Champions League.

Additional information is available here.

Regarding the postponed matches in the Men’s EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers a conference call with the participating federations is planned for early January 2021 in order to serve as a basis for decisions on the next period of matches and hence the further qualification.

Outlook to 2021 and beyond

As part of the ‘General Report on Current Situation and Organisation of Events’ the Executive Committee received an overview of upcoming events.

Regarding the Men’s EHF EURO 2022 in Hungary and Slovakia it was underlined that the first tickets would go on sale on 7 January 2021.

Regarding the Men’s EHF EURO 2024 in Germany it was confirmed that following the IHF Men’s World Championship in Egypt, the German Handball Federation and the EHF would align on a date for the announcement of the playing venues for the championship.

The EXEC also took note of the bid code for the EHF EURO events in 2026 and 2028 which has been submitted to all federations which expressed an interest in hosting. The timeline has been altered as follows that all bids must arrive at the EHF Office by 10 May 2021. In June 2021, the EXEC will approve the bids. The allocation of the EHF EUROs 2026 and 2028 will be on 19 November 2021 at an Extraordinary EHF Congress.

Expressions of interest have been made as follows

Men’s EHF EURO 2026 (15 January – 1 February)

  • Belarus/Lithuania/Poland
  • Croatia
  • France
  • Norway/Denmark
  • Switzerland
  • Sweden

Men’s EHF EURO 2028 (13-30 January)

  • Belgium
  • Croatia
  • Estonia
  • France
  • Norway/Denmark
  • Portugal/Spain
  • Switzerland
  • Sweden

Women's EHF EURO 2026 (26 November – 13 December)

  • Norway/Denmark
  • Russia
  • Sweden

Women's EHF EURO 2028 (30 November – 17 December)

  • Norway/Denmark
  • Sweden

Motions

Several motions had been submitted to the EHF Executive Committee prior to its meeting.

On the national team level, the EXEC approved adaptations to the regulations for the Women’s EHF EURO 2022 Qualifiers as well as to the younger age category event regulations for the implementation of the Men’s 19 and Men’s 21 World Championship Qualification tournaments. Regarding the two latter event, two draws took place as part of the EXEC meeting.

The EXEC confirmed the prolongation with the organising committee of the Partille Cup and the Swedish Handball Federation for the European Open in 2021 and 2022. Next year a Men’17 event will be organised, followed by a Women’s 16 event in 2022.

Following the meeting of the Task Force for Education Compensation in December, the EXEC approved a motion for the development and implementation of a ranking system regarding the education compensation for international European transfers.

In beach handball, the EXEC approved the motion of the commission to not host the YAC 17 Beach Handball EURO, which had been initially planned for May 2021, and instead change the age categories at the YAC Beach Handball EURO in Bulgaria from U19 to U17. This U17 event will then also serve as qualification event for the U18 Beach Handball World Championships in 2022.

The EXEC also confirmed the town of Torrox (Malaga) in Spain as venue for the ebt Finals 2021  from 3 to 6 June.

EHF Congress 2021

Furthermore, the EXEC was informed about several topics which will be motioned to the EHF Congress in 2021 with regards to the statutes of the EHF Court of Arbitration (ECA). These motions concern the ECA’s name, the nomination and appointment of arbitrators, the ECA Council functions and the rules of arbitration.

The meeting finished with an outlook to the Congress, scheduled to take place in Luxembourg on 23 and 24 April. It is expected that approximately 60 people will be elected to the various boards and committees.

Two main deadlines are coming up, as by 23 December motions to the 2021 Congress must be submitted. Proposals for the 2021 elections as well as an application to host the 2023 EHF Congress are possible until 23 January.

Following this outlook EHF President Michael Wiederer closed the meeting, wishing all participants a happy holiday season and reiterated his best wishes for the start to 2021.

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