Two best Macedonian teams, Vardar and Metalurg will with their derby open SEHA GSS League's new season in Skopje. Current SEHA GSS League's champion Vardar will on Saturday in Kale sports hall welcome current Macedonian champions - Metalurg.
Last season their matches were great, intense, with high quality handball. In the first one it was 28:28 and in the second one Metalurg has managed to beat their rivals with 22:12. Big rivalry has in the meantime brought some great players to Macedonian biggest clubs. While Vardar has chosen to reinforce much during this summer too bringing many highly experienced players to their roster, Metalurg has decided to work more with their youngsters which would make everything easier for them in the future.
Recent victory in the final of the tournament in Struga for Metalurg probably is the only visible advantage for the team from Avtokomanda, in terms of confidence, but Vardar’s coach Raul Gonzalez thinks this will be a totally different match. Lino Červar on the other hand believes this match will not be different from any other in SEHA GSS League which Metalurg's supporters and other handball 'lovers' find hard to believe in. Because it is more than just a match.
Vardar will miss their right back Vladimir Petrić who is still struggling with his shoulder injury and on the other side Filip Mirkulovski remains only Červar's doubt.
Raul Gonzales, Vardar’s coach
- This is a very important game for us, because as SEHA GSS League’s champions we want another trophy this season. Of course, we first have to reach the F4 tournament and to do it we need to win matches like the one ahead of us against our city rival Metalurg. We have already played Metalurg this season on the tournament in Struga but our preparations have started after it so I believe that match doesn’t mean much. We also have many new players in our roster and they’ll surely need some time to adapt to our playing style.
Filip Lazarov, Vardar’s player- This is the beginning of the season, teams still have some time to improve their form. Our main goal is to make something in Champions League, but also we want to win SEHA GSS League. I want to send a message to our opponents and it is that Vardar is a clear favorite against anyone. In front of our fans we can beat any team in Europe, which means that we expect nothing but a win against Metalurg. They have managed to take domestic League title last season as well as beat us on tournament in Struga but now it is time for revenge.
Lino Červar, Metalurg’s coach:
For us, this is a match like all others. We will enter the court without any pressure on our backs. Vardar plays at home, in front of their fans which surely makes them favorites in tomorrow's match. Our goal is to play well and finish the match with a positive result.
Vuko Borozan, Metalurg’s player:
This is a very specific match, great derby. There will be pressure on us from the crowd and I'm sure Vardar will do everything to take revenge for the loss from the tournament in Struga.