Kiel take revenge over PSG to book EHF FINAL4 ticket
On Thursday night in Kiel, the last shot of the final EHF Champions League 2021/22 quarter-final match decided a thrilling tie between THW Kiel and Paris Saint-Germain Handball.
After PSG’s Dutch centre back Luc Steins had his shot saved by Niklas Landin, the Kiel players were jumping for joy after their extremely hard-earned 33:32 win in the second leg, which secured the German's side ticket to Cologne and ensured that they took revenge for last season's defeat in the quarter-finals.
After Veszprém, Kielce and Barça had already qualified for the EHF FINAL4 Men in Cologne, Kiel complete the line-up for the event on 18/19 June. Interestingly, the same four teams will fight for the trophy at the EHF FINAL4 as in 2015, when Barça won the title.
QUARTER-FINAL, SECOND LEG
MOTW: THW Kiel (GER) vs Paris Saint-Germain Handball (FRA) 33:32 (17:19)
First leg: 30:30. THW Kiel won 63:62 on aggregate
- after their 4:1 start, PSG were constantly ahead in the first half. One reason why was the performance of Kiel's goalkeepers: Niklas Landin and Dario Quenstedt only saved one shot in 30 minutes. Landin clearly improved after the break
- outgoing right back Nedim Remili and former THW player Nikola Karabatic were the keys in PSG’s efficient attack — combining to score nine of PSG's 19 goals in the first half
- after the break, Kiel's left wing Magnus Landin was the man for the crucial goals. His fifth strike first levelled the score at 19:19, and four minutes later he netted for THW’s first lead at 22:21
- boosted by their amazing fans as they turned the match around after the break, Kiel allowed PSG to score only five goals in 15 minutes and extended the gap to 27:24
- but PSG came back, levelling the score at 31:31, before THW top scorer Magnus Landin restored Kiel's lead at 32:31 with his seventh goal of the game
- THW's defensive cornerstone Patrick Wiencek was awarded Player of the Match after a true thriller
Experience paves Kiel's way to Cologne
In June, THW Kiel will travel to Cologne for the EHF FINAL4 for the eighth time, but many players in the current squad have not witnessed these special emotions that often. From 2016 until this season, Kiel had only qualified for the pinnacle event once: in December 2020, when they won the trophy.
But the THW squad is still full of international experience. The three team captains – Niklas Landin, Domagoj Duvnjak and Patrick Wiencek – are all 33 years old, and Kiel also have 30 year-old defence specialist Hendrik Pekeler and 35-year-old right back Steffen Weinhold in their squad.
All of them have played so many crucial matches to know that they need to remain calm, even if you are down at the break.