Almost month and a half since the last match in 2015, SEHA GAZPROM League’s action is back! Only two days after the final whistle on EHF’ EURO 2016 in Poland, the best European regional competition starts with its second part opening it with a match between Hungarian champions Veszprem and Croatian runners-up NEXE Našice.
Hungarians are in difficult position after the end of the tournament in Poland, where a lot of Veszprem’ members were involved with their national teams. Left wing Cristian Ugalde (Spain - silver medal), left back Ivan Slišković and goalkeeper Mirko Alilović (both Croatia - bronze medals) won't be able to help their team-mates, but coach Xavier Sabate has also experienced difficulties organizing trainings in absence of so many players. Good thing however is that Momir Ilić and Christian Zeitz are both ready to get back in the roster.
Match starts on Tuesday (18.00 CET) with live coverage on Digi1.
Javier Sabate, Veszprem’ coach:
I expect a tough match with NEXE being a quality opponent. I don’t think this will be the same match as the one in Croatia where we’ve played quite well. We must catch form as soon as possible after EC break. Some of our players were here to prepare and some were not having international duties. They are however happy to be back and I’m sure we’ll rise step by step. Players which were playing on EC on Sunday will not be in roster tomorrow but good thing is that Momir Ilić and Christian Zeitz are back.
Mirsad Terzić, Veszprem’ player:
I fully agree with the coach, we were not together for a long time and I feel that players who were in Veszprem in January have to step up. This will not be a same match as our first clash against NEXE with situation being completely different. Despite of that I believe in our triumph and expect our form to rise. I can, on behalf of myself, say I’m happy here especially after extending contract and I am looking forward to new challenges and big crowns.
Zdenko Kordi, NEXE's coach:
We will open series of three matches against a team which is playing in EHF Champions League. Before the match in Veszprem we’ve played two matches against very good Hungarian teams Oroshaza and PICK Szeged. Our form, of course, wasn't at the maximum level, but it will reach it as the season goes on. Veszprem, probably won’t be able to count on their Croatian and Spanish members. I want to congratulate them on the medals.
Perica Lelić, NEXE's goalkeeper:
Veszprem is for us toughest opponent and also the biggest favorite for the title. We are ready for new challlenges. Our wish is to make their job as tough as possible.