Three teams can book Last 16 spot in final round of 2022

EHF / Danijela Vekić, Adrian Costeiu, Kevin Domas, Björn Pazen

Tuesday’s sixth and final round before the winter break in the EHF European League Men group phase could see three yet unbeaten teams already securing their place in the Last 16: Montpellier HB in group A, RK Nexe in C, and Füchse Berlin in D.


Tatran Presov (SVK) vs Fejer B.A.L.-Veszprém (HUN)
Tuesday 13 December, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Veszprém wrote history winning the first game between the two teams (30:28), winning their first ever points in the European League group phase
  • the Hungarian side is now fifth in the group with two points, while Presov are last with no points
  • Benedek Éles has already scored 36 times in the European League this season for Veszprém, while Nikola Ivanovic has netted 30 times for Presov
  • Presov have scored 138 goals so far, the third-lowest number of goals by a team in the group phase behind Motor and Aguas Santas
  • Veszprém have conceded 185 goals, the most of any team in the group phase

Kadetten Schaffhausen (SUI) vs Frisch Auf Göppingen (GER)
Tuesday 13 December, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Kadetten beat Göppingen last week (25:24) for their fourth straight win in the European League
  • this home defeat was the first at home for Göppingen in a European competition since the EHF Cup final 2006
  • Schaffhausen are now second in the group with eight points, while Göppingen are third with six
  • Kadetten line player and captain Lukas Herburger: "I am sure, Göppingen are seeking revenge. I belief that we will gain again some points due to our home strength with the fantastic crowd in the back."
  • having taken 135 goals, Schaffhausen have the second-best defence of the group phase; only Füchse in group D conceded fewer goals: 134

Montpellier HB (FRA) vs SL Benfica (POR)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Montpellier have the maximum of 10 points and will lock up their Last 16 spot if they beat Benfica again and Presov defeat Veszprém
  • titleholders Benfica are fourth in the group, with four points
  • Montpellier’s only loss of the season so far has been against Nantes (29:28) in the French league, where Montpellier are currently ranked No. 1
  • Hugo Descat is the latest key player of Montpellier to be ruled with an injury; the wing has sustained a meniscus injury
  • Benfica left back Leandro Semedo: "The home game was very well played by both teams, and luck at the end was not on our side. In France, I hope we can be even better, and that victory will come with us to Lisbon. We must run more and improve our defensive performance, that will be the key to the game."
  • the last Portuguese team to beat Montpellier was FC Porto – three seasons ago in the EHF Champions League
  • Benfica drew with Sporting in the domestic league last weekend: 27:27
20221212 ELM R6 Preview Quote Veszprém
Presov are a really good team with many talented and experienced players. We have to continue our performance from last week. We want to collect our second victory in the EHF European League, but it will be a really tough and tight game against Presov.
Benedek Éles:
Fejer B.A.L.-Veszprém left back


TM Benidorm (ESP) vs PAUC Handball (FRA)
Tuesday 13 December, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • after losing four of their first five games in their first season in the group phase of an European competition, Benidorm are bottom of the table
  • a home loss against Ystad last week derailed PAUC’s campaign; yet they are still second in the standings, with six points, and a win would bring them closer to the knockout phase
  • Spanish right wing Ivan Rodriguez Martinez is Benidorm’s top scorer with 32 goals, including 12 against Flensburg
  • Benidorm coach Fernando Latorre: “We will give everything we have got to try to play a good game, despite the fatigue of the team. We hope to end before the winter break with a positive result.”
  • PAUC left back Gerdas Babarskas: “They have some tactical decisions that are not common in handball these days, so we have to be ready to adapt fast and do our best to stop them.”
  • PAUC’s only win in last season’s group phase came against a Spanish team: La Rioja; overall, however, the lost twice and drew once in four matches against Spanish opponents

Valur (ISL) vs Ystads IF HF (SWE)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Ystad are one of the in-form teams of the competition, having won the last three games
  • their backs, Jonathan Svensson and Kim Andersson, have scored 64 of the team’s 158 goals this season, or 40% of the total goals for Ystad
  • in the last nine games played in all competitions, Ystad are unbeaten with eight wins and one draw; their last defeat was against IK Sävehof in the Swedish league
  • after securing two wins to start the group, Valur are now on a three-game winless streak with two losses and one draw; they have conceded 34 goals per game on average
  • Valur are fifth on the list of the most-scoring teams this group phase with 169 goals; 11 more than Ystad

SG Flensburg-Handewitt (GER) vs FTC (HUN)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • despite winning only three points in the first five matches, FTC have the third-best attack in the competition with 171 goals scored, only eight short of Füchse’s leading tally
  • only one team, fellow Hungarian side Veszprém, has conceded more goals (185) than FTC’s 176 midway into the group phase
  • Flensburg have won both their home games this season, while FTC lost both away games
  • the German side would open a six-point gap to the fifth place if they win Tuesday, with four rounds to go
  • Flensburg are unbeaten in six of their last seven European home matches against Hungarian teams, all in the EHF Champions League
20221212 ELM R6 Preview Quote Ftc
We want to get a good result and play a close, equal match. Of course, we know that we will play in the home of one of the best teams in the world: Flensburg are a club with a long tradition, and playing there is always a great honor. We will do everything we can to be equal opponents.
István Pásztor
FTC head coach


Balatonfüredi KSE (HUN) vs HC Alpla Hard (AUT)
Tuesday 13 December, 17:00 CET, live on EHFTV

  • both teams earned their first points of the group phase when they drew against each other last week
  • both are among the five teams with the lowest number of goals scored: Hard scored 139 times, Balatonfüred 138
  • Balatofüred was expected to welcome back Péter Hornyák and Bendegúz Bóka, but will still miss five other players due to injury
  • Balatonfüred head coach György László: "I am expecting a tough match. We have to put aside the away game, and be confident and full of self-assurance tomorrow."
  • Hard head coach Hannes Jón Jónsson: "We are starting the journey with absolutely no pressure and all the players who will be on the court will do everything they can. For us, it is now a matter of successfully completing the last week of this intensive time and going into the well-deserved winter break with a good feeling."
  • Hard left wing Luca Raschle and Balatonfüred right back Milan Gostovic were the top scorers in the first encounter, scoring eight and nine goals respectively

Fraikin BM. Granollers (ESP) vs RK Nexe (CRO)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Nexe secure their place in the knockout phase if they beat Granollers, as they will then open a gap of at least nine points to the fifth-ranked team with four matches left
  • Nexe beat Granollers 39:36 last week, the second straight defeat for Granollers after starting the group phase with three wins
  • if Granollers do not beat Nexe, they will lose the second place in the group
  • Granollers head coach Antonio Rama: "The last match of the year at home; a hard match against the leader in the group. We look forward to hand Nexe a defeat this time."
  • Nexe have scored 173 goals so far, with a 70.9 per cent efficiency
  • Nexe head coach Branko Tamše: "Granollers are an excellent team that play very fast and modern handball, but we also showed such handball in the first game. Tomislav Severec is returning to the team after his injuries and will certainly play, even though he hasn't trained for a while, but we are happy that he has fully recovered."
  • both sides have a player in the top five goal scorers: Pol Valero (Granollers) and Fahrudin Melic (Nexe)

Sporting CP (POR) vs Skjern Håndbold (DEN)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Skjern want to make up for the 30:28 loss to Sporting in round 5 last week
  • both sides have six points, with Skjern having a slightly better goal difference; the winner of this match could take over the second place in the group
  • Sporting have won all three previous duels with Skjern
  • Sporting coach Ricardo Costa: "We want to carry on with our good momentum and grab another victory, our main goal is to get to the next stage and get the best position wen can in our group. We know we are going to face a very strong side, who also need to win after last week’s defeat at home against us, so we are prepared for all the difficulties we are going to find."
  • the Costa brothers, Francisco and Martim, scored 40% of all Sporting goals so far; they will face goalkeeper Christoffer Hoffmann Bonde, who is in the top four of the competition with an average safe rate of 34.67
  • Sporting drew with fellow EHF European league contenders Benfica in the Portuguese league (27:27); Skjern could not keep up with EHF Champions League side Aalborg Håndbold in Denmark (32:24)
20221212 ELM R6 Preview Quote Motor
We could prove in the last games how much potential there is in our team. We have found our strength and will give our guests from Portugal a tough task.
Gintaras Savukynas
HC Motor head coach


Skanderborg-Aarhus (DEN) vs Füchse Berlin (GER)
Tuesday 13 December, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Füchse won the first duel last week 30:24; another win would already guarantee the German side a ticket to the Last 16
  • Füchse have the best attack (179 goals scored) and the best defence (134 goals conceded), as well as the leading goal scorer: Milos Vujovic (40)
  • Thomas Sommer Arnoldsen is Skanderborg’s best scorer, with 36 goals
  • Skanderborg-Aarhus had won their first four group matches, in what is the debut European season for the club formed in 2021
  • both teams suffered one-goal defeats in their domestic league: Skanderborg-Arhus against Ribe-Esbjerg (29:28), Füchse against SC Magdeburg (32:31)

HC Motor (UKR) vs Aguas Santas Milaneza (POR)
Tuesday 13 December, 18:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • last week, the teams shared the points in a thriller (26:26), as Motor’s last goal was scored after the final buzzer
  • for both sides, it was their first point in the group phase; they are still three points behind fourth-ranked Pelister
  • this is a duel between the two teams who have scored the fewest goals in the group phase so far: Aguas Santas with 124 goals and Motor with 136
  • Aguas Santas centre back Afonso Lima: "After a first half of the group phase without the results we wanted but with a lot of learning, we are confident that we can do better and face the game with Motor with the ambition to win."
  • left back Ihor Turchenko scored seven goals for Motor last week and is the fourth-best scorer of the competition with 35 goals

HC Eurofarm Pelister (MKD) vs Bidasoa Irun (ESP)
Tuesday 13 December, 20:45 CET, live on EHFTV

  • Bidasoa Irun won the first encounter unexpectedly clear: 32:20, after a decisive 20:12 half-time lead
  • the Spanish side has taken all six points so far on their home court
  • Pelister still wait for their first points at home; their four points came from awa on home ground in this season, all they took their two victories at Motor and at Aguas Santas
  • Bidasoa head coach Jacobo Cuétara: "This is an opportunity to get back on track for third place. It is more of an opportunity for us than a definitive or very, very important game; we have to take some of the pressure off ourselves."
  • Pelister new arrival Sebastian Henneberg is 10th best scorer of the competition with 32 goals since the start of the group phase

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