Big names collide in race for the group phase
Tuesday night is European League night once again as the second qualification round in the men’s competition takes place.
24 teams will contest the 12 remaining place in the group phase and there are some tasty contests in store as all 12 first leg matches take place on Tuesday evening.
Germany’s traditional domination of the competition is put to the test as three clubs face interesting opposition.
Last season’s beaten finalists Füchse Berlin take on Poland’s perennial third team Azoty-Pulawy, while the bronze medal winners Rhein-Neckar Löwen are at home to Benfica and their formidable line player duo of Rogerio Moraes and Alexis Borges.
2010 EHF Cup winners TBV Lemgo Lippe are back in Europe for the first time in 10 years, facing Valur Iceland in Reykjavik, the home city of their top scorer Bjarki Már Elísson.
There is a serious “this town ain’t big enough for the both of us” vibe about the second qualification round as a number of teams with real ambitions for the competition will be knocked out.
USAM Nimes Gard were knocked out by Russian opposition at the last 16 stage last season and they will be hoping to avoid a similar fate at this early stage when they face HC CSKA, who also reached that stage in the previous campaign.
Bjerringbro fell in spectacular fashion against CSKA at this point last year and their opponents this time around are by no means easier – the Halil Jaganjac-inspired Nexe come to town in the first leg.
Having come so close to reaching the quarter-finals last season, Sporting CP have their sights set on another big campaign but 2019 EHF Cup Finals participants TTH Holstebro have other ideas.
Among the many games to look forward to are two national derbies from Spain and Denmark. Surprise Danish cup winners Mors-Thy Handbold face familiar foes GOG in just their second season in EHF European Cup competition.
BM Logroño La Rioja and Abanca Ademar Leon have often been in direct competition for the claim of Spain’s second-best club in recent years and this time they face-off with a place in the group phase up for grabs.
EHF EUROPEAN LEAGUE MEN – QUALIFICATION ROUND 2 FIRST LEG
KS Azoty-Pulawy SA vs Füchse Berlin
ØIF Arendal vs PAUC Handball - live on EHFTV
USAM Nimes Gard vs HC CSKA
GOG vs Mors-Thy Handbold
Kadetten Schaffhausen vs Fraikin BM. Granollers
Orlen Wisla Plock vs HC Dobrogea Sud Constanta
Rhein-Neckar Löwen vs SL Benfica - live on EHFTV
Bjerringbro-Silkeborg vs RK Nexe - live on EHFTV