20210916 Flensburg Barca IAJ12761
EHF Champions League

Eight remain in the race for Cologne

EHF / Kevin Domas

Defending champions Barça had already beaten their quarter-final opponent Flensburg twice in the group phase, now the 2014 champions hope to strike back in the race for Cologne. Group winners Aalborg have the tough test at Veszprém ahead and the Hungarian side is unbeaten on home ground in this Champions League season.

In the other pairings, Paris and Kiel will face each other in the rematch of last season’s quarter-finals, won by the French side, while Montpellier will try to build an advantage on Thursday before flying out to Kielce next week.

QUARTER-FINALS, FIRST LEG

SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER) vs Barça (ESP)
Wednesday 11 May, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Barça have won ten of 12 duels against Flensburg, including both group matches (29:22, 25:21) this season - but lost the biggest game, the 2014 semi-final
  • Flensburg were sixth ranked after the group phase by four victories two draws and eight defeats and eliminated Szeged in the play-offs, while Barça finished second and skipped the play-offs
  • Flensburg play their 14th quarter-finals in their 17th appearance in the EHF Champions League, while it is Barça’s 22nd quarter-final in 25 EHF Champions League seasons, 17 times, they proceeded to the semi-finals
  • Flensburg’s top scorer is Hampus Wanne with 75 goals, three fewer than Barça right back Dika Mem, who sits second in the overall top scorer list
  • SG goalkeeper Kevin Moller played for Barça and won the title last season before moving to Flensburg for his second spell with the club
  • while Barça are already confirmed Spanish champions, Flensburg are third in Germany, eight points behind Magdeburg
20210916 Flensburg Barca IAJ12712
Against Barca we need everything – a tough defence and discipline in the attack. In the last two games, Perez de Vargas did a great job, so it was really difficult for us. We will fight together to score important goals. We hope for a great atmosphere in the Flens-Arena which could help us a lot in this tough and important game.
Kevin Møller
Flensburg goalkeeper

Paris Saint-Germain HB (FRA) vs THW Kiel (GER)
Wednesday 11 May, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Paris and Kiel faced each other 13 times in the EHF Champions League, and both sides won six games, with one resulting in a draw
  • last season, both sides faced each other in the quarter-finals, with Paris qualifying for the EHF FINAL4. The French side won the return leg at home (34:29) after losing by two in Germany (31:29)
  • this quarter-final participation is the eighth in a row for Paris, a record as no other European team has matched this performance in recent years
  • Paris’ best scorers, Mikkel Hansen (75 goals) and Kamil Syprzak (73 goals), are both ahead of Niclas Ekberg, who netted 63 times for THW Kiel
  • Paris Saint-Germain celebrated their eighth straight French title last week after they beat Montpellier, their 25th win in as many games this season
  • THW Kiel are currently second in the German Bundesliga, four points behind SC Magdeburg, and won the German Cup last month

Telekom Veszprém HC (HUN) vs Aalborg Håndbold (DEN)
Thursday 12 May, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Aalborg directly qualified for the quarter-finals as winners of group A, while Veszprém eliminated Vardar in the play-offs after finishing fourth in group B
  • Veszprém play their 27th EHF Champions League season and their 20th quarter-final, while Aalborg are in their seventh season and their second consecutive quarter-final after eliminating Flensburg last year on their way to Cologne
  • both sides faced four times so far, each side won two matches, both teams won the away matches in the 2020/21 group phase
  • Icelander Aron Palmarsson is the only Champions League winner in Aalborg’s squad (with Barça in 2021, 2010 and 2012 with Kiel) and he is a former Veszprém player
  • current Champions League top scorer Felix Claar (81 goals) and Lukas Sandell on Aalborg’s side won gold medals at the EHF EURO 2022 with Sweden, beating Spain including Veszprém’s players Rodrigo Corrales and Jorge Maqueda
  • Aalborg top the group of the Danish play-offs after beating Fredericia 27:23, while Veszprém are second in the Hungarian league, one point below Szeged but with two games in hand following a 34:28 win against Budakalsz
20200915 CL Veszprem Nenadic
Aalborg is a fantastic team, they are very disciplined and physically strong. We need to play our own game, we cannot let them run and we need to be focused. Whichever team is going to be stronger mentally and makes fewer mistakes will go through.
Petar Nenadic
Veszprém playmaker

Montpellier HB (FRA) vs Vive Lomza Kielce (POL)
Thursday 12 May, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Kielce qualified directly for the quarter-finals by finishing first in group B, while Montpellier eliminated Porto in the play-offs (64:56 on aggregate)
  • Montpellier and Kielce have faced each other 10 times, since 2014, and Montpellier took six confrontations, while Kielce won four
  • out of these confrontations, four of them were in the knockout stages in 2014/15 and 2016/17. Kielce qualified in 2015 and Montpellier made it to the quarter-finals in 2017
  • Montpellier’s top scorer Hugo Descat netted 65 times, three more than Kielce’s leading scorer, Dylan Nahi
  • Montpellier will be missing three left-handers for the first leg, due to injuries: Valentin Porte, Julien Bos and Yanis Lenne
  • Kielce are currently leading the Polish league, with 25 wins in as many games, while Montpellier are fourth in the French league after losing in Paris last Friday (37:33)

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