20230507 CSM Esbjerg 8
EHF Champions League

Esbjerg seal EHF FINAL4 berth for the second season in a row

20221106 AH 3577 2
EHF / Adrian Costeiu

Team Esbjerg have completed the four-team card of the EHF FINAL4, with a 33:31 win over CSM Bucuresti, enabling the Danish side to take back-to-back berths for the business end of the European premium competition.

The draw for the EHF FINAL4 will take place in Budapest on Tuesday, 9 May.


CSM Bucuresti (ROU) vs Team Esbjerg (DEN) 31:33 (18:16)

Team Esbjerg win 65:59 on aggregate

  • Esbjerg qualified for the EHF FINAL4 for the second season in a row, joining Vipers Kristiansand, FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria and Györi Audi ETO KC in Budapest for the first weekend in June
  • the pivotal point of the game was the start of the second half, when Esbjerg used a 7:2 run to turn the game on its head as left wing Sanna Solberg-Isaksen scored three of those seven goals
  • this was CSM’s first loss of the season on their home court after previously winning five games and drawing the other two, as their top scorer, Cristina Neagu, scored only four goals
  • backs Kristine Breistøl and Nora Mørk plus left wing Sanna Solberg-Isaksen were Esbjerg’s top scorers, combining for 19 goals, with Breistøl scoring seven goals
  • CSM will now have to wait one more season for a berth in the EHF FINAL4, which evaded them since the 2017/18 season, having always missed the chance in the quarter-finals

Esbjerg totally outplay CSM to seal EHF FINAL4 berth

Team Esbjerg navigated through a tough season, but eventually made it to the EHF FINAL4 after two excellent games against CSM Bucuresti, who finished their season in the European premium competition with three losses in a row.

CSM had their best-ever start in the EHF Champions League Women, but faltered in 2023, as question marks were raised since their loss against Krim Mercator Ljublana in the last match of the group phase, which relegated them to the second place.

They lost by a four-goal margin in the first leg against Esbjerg and had big expectations in the second leg, where they started off on the wrong foot, but had a three-goal lead near the end of the first half.

With disqualifications for Emilie Hegh Arntzen and Crina Pintea, as the spirits ran high, CSM collapsed, enabling Esbjerg to take back-to-back berths for the EHF FINAL4 as Jesper Jensen’s side established themselves as one of the top teams in Europe.

SPG 4462
Both teams are so good, and in the end it was 50/50. This away game was really special because we knew the crowd would be amazing and put a lot of pressure on us, but I am happy that we played smart today.
Kristine Breistøl
Team Esbjerg left back
SPG 3536
First of all, I would like to congratulate Team Esbjerg! It was a very good game against two very strong teams in front of a very nice crowd. I am disappointed now, but I would like to thank our fans a lot for today, the crowd did a great great job!
Grace Zaadi
CSM Bucuresti centre back

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