Faruk Yusuf: “We have to keep believing and help each other to make things easy”
BM Granollers are one of the oldest clubs in Spain, and since they made their European League debut, they have been determined to always be involved in European competitions. The biggest signing this season is Faruk Yusuf, a Nigerian right-back from Kielce. And the passion for handball came naturally to Faruk. “When I started playing, I want to do it just for fun. After hearing a lot about this game and seeing my team's older players go far, I decided to give everything to the game and leave all the rest aside,” Yusuf highlighted.
The 19-year-old is having incredible performances in the EHF European League and has scored 46 goals so far. But what has really made the difference in his game? The keyword is mentality. “My mentality always allows me to play at full throttle and the EHF European League is a competition that the whole world watches, so I don't want to disappoint my teammates and the people who love me and that's why my mindset always is what differentiates me”, said Faruk Yusuf.
In this competition, the Spanish team were third in Group C with 13 points, registering five wins from five home games, and their next opponent in the EHF European League Last 16 will be Skanderborg-Aarhus, second in Group D with 14 points after three away wins from five. The two teams have great players capable of making a difference in this tie and details will be the key. “We have to keep believing and help each other to make things easy for us in order to achieve the goals we all wanted. Team spirit is essential,” highlighted Yusuf.
In domestic competitions, the scenario is somewhat reversed. BM Granollers are having a very interesting season, as they occupy second place in the Championship, just behind leaders Barça. While Skanderborg-Aarhus, after an excellent fourth place last season where they finished only one point behind the third-placed Skjern, are sixth at this moment. The European duels are coming and BM Granollers’ house is the opening stage of the tie.
Palau d'Esports de Granollers is the lucky charm for the Spanish side; they won all games at home in the Group Phase and want to do the same in Last 16. “We want to make the best possible result at home and then go to Skanderborg-Aarhus Pavilion with some margin,” he said.
“Making the best result at home is the first thing we want because we don’t really know what will happen in Skanderborg and I believe we will make it out.”
It is also important to emphasize that there is a big Nigerian community in Granollers and this fact is something relevant to Faruk Yusuf. “It’s very important, it is also for them that this is worth it. Because being here all I want is to make people believe that in Nigeria we have good handball. And everything I'm doing will definitely be something important,” highlighted Yusuf.
Asked about the main goal of BM Granollers in this European competition, the answer is clear. “Our main goal is to achieve the EHF European League Finals in Flensburg. We are going to do our best to be there with the believe of ourselves,” he finished.