|28.10.2016, 12:40||◄ last page|
GROUP D PREVIEW: IK Sävehof are chasing their first win against RK Krim Mercartor, while Larvik are struggling to get going on the third round of matches in Group D this weekend.
Savehof chasing first win against Krim, Larvik chasing first points
Few would have expected Group D of the Women’s EHF Champions League to look the way it does after two round of play.
Sunday sees top play bottom in Esbjerg, but it is 2011 champions Larvik who find themselves in the role of underdogs, but first up is the meeting of Krim and Sävehof, who are fighting for sole possession of second place in the group.
RK Krim Mercator (SLO) vs IK Sävehof (SWE)
Sävehof got off a perfect start to the group matches with their 25:22 win away against Larvik, but were brought back to earth with a 25:20 loss at home to Team Esbjerg last Sunday.
Head coach Henrik Signell is expecting another difficult task in Ljubljana, where Krim defeated Larvik 24:22 last Saturday.
“From what I have seen of Krim this season, they are considerably better at home than they are away.
“In Larvik, we proved that we can win on away ground, but there is no doubt that winning on Balkan will be harder than winning in Norway.
“First of all, it is a matter of doing better than we did against Esbjerg, where we never really got to our game,” says Signell.
In the previous four Champions League matches between the two teams, Krim have never lost against Sävehof, with two wins for the Slovenian side and two draws so far.
Team Esbjerg (DEN) vs Larvik (NOR)
While Esbjerg have enjoyed a terrific start to their first campaign at this level, having won both their matches clearly, Larvik had an unusually poor start with two defeats.
“When you look at the league table, there is no doubt that we are favourites, but it is not as easy as that.
“To me, it is obvious that Larvik have underperformed in their first two matches, and I am sure they will be coming with everything they have against us.
“However, this is another match we have to win in order to take as many points with us to the main round as possible,” says Esbjerg coach Lars Frederiksen who will have right wing Maibritt Kviesgaard back for the Scandinavian derby.
The 31-year-old sat out the Danish league match against Kobenhavn Handbold Wednesday evening due to a minor injury.
“It is about time we start winning.
“We have let our first two matches get out of our hands in the last seven or eight minutes, and we have to improve in this area,” says Larvik coach Tor Odvar Moen.
“Esbjerg have won two matches, and we have lost two, so they are favourites, but we will simply have to attack them where they are weakest.
“We are still a strong team, and we will strive to prove that in Esbjerg,” Moen adds.
TEXT: Peter Bruun / cor