Sweden wins European Handball Championship: We fought for it for so long

In this tournament, the Swedes were the men without nerves. Decisions in the last few seconds? Not uncommon in handball - a Swedish specialty in the days of Bra

Sweden wins European Handball Championship: We fought for it for so long

In this tournament, the Swedes were the men without nerves. Decisions in the last few seconds? Not uncommon in handball - a Swedish specialty in the days of Bratislava and Budapest. On the way to the semi-finals, a razor-thin main-round win against Norway, a 34:33 victory in the round of the last four against France on Friday, and the best thing at the end on Sunday evening in Budapest: by a seven-meter after the end of the regular 60 minutes, the Scandinavians won 27:26 (12:13) against Spain and became European champions again for the first time since 2002.

Handball-EURO 2022 Liveticker

With this, the Swedes prevented Spain from being crowned European champion for the third time in a row. It was even their fourth final participation since 2016 – and that with a thoroughly renovated and rejuvenated team.

This means that the Swedish selection of the Norwegian coach Glenn Solberg has reached the goal too early – their home World Cup will take place in 2023. Solberg had always said that his team would only reach the level of the legendary "Bengan boys" in three to five years - these were the Swedes of the 1990s who determined the handball world. Now there is a new generation around playmaker Jim Gottfridsson and goalkeeper Andreas Palicka, who could play for trophies after some lost finals or missed finals in recent years.

"We have been fighting for so long to finally get a title again as Swedish handball players," said Kreisläufer Max Darj, "we were behind in all the decisive games, but we have a chance with this team against everyone. We were a big group here from the first in the squad to the last post-nominee." The Swedes also had to contend with corona infections at this controversial European Championship in Hungary and Slovakia, but were lucky that infected people returned in time after negative tests - like the right–winger Niclas Ekberg, who threw his team and all the fans in blue and yellow into luck with the direct hit from the seven-meter point.

The Spaniards fought after the final whistle with late decisions of the German referees Robert Schulze/Tobias Tönnies. A missed free throw for the outstanding Joan Canellas at 26:26 seconds before the end irritated her. On the following attack, Canella's Daniel Pettersson got in the way – seven meters. In the semifinals, the team of coach Jordi Ribera dominated the title favorite Denmark thanks to a famous defensive performance. After all, the Danes came to a happy end with their 35:32 after extra time against France and finished third. Norway finished fifth and the German team seventh.

Date Of Update: 01 February 2022, 00:00

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