20/12/2020

Unbeaten powerhouses clash in star-studded final

FINAL PREVIEW: France and Norway are the only unbeaten sides in the competition, but only one of them will take home the trophy

Norway and France are set to fight for the EHF EURO 2020 title. Photo © kolektiff

There can be only one. And this is precisely the battle to showcase the best of the best, the only unbeaten teams at the EHF EURO 2020, clashing in the big final.

Title-holders France are in the middle of their best-ever unbeaten streak at the EHF EURO, 14 games, while Norway won their last 11 matches in a row. But something has got to give, as one of the record streaks will be snapped come the final whistle in the Jyske Bank BOXEN in Herning on Sunday evening.

Plucky France can write history by becoming only the third team to retain the EHF EURO title. But Norway are masters of the finals, winning seven of them up to now.

FINAL

France vs Norway
Sunday 20 December, 18:00 CET, live on EHFTV

  • France and Norway will meet for the sixth time at the EHF EURO, but for the first time in the final, despite at least one of them featuring in 12 of the 14 finals played in the history of the tournament
  • France only won three mutual games from 18 played against Norway, including the last game between the two sides, the IHF Women’s World Championship final in 2017, 23:21
  • Norway (66 per cent) and France (63 per cent) have the best shooting efficiency in the competition, but Norway (232 goals scored) have scored 43 goals more than France (189)
  • the finalists also have the best defences: France conceded 157 goals in seven games (22.4 goals per game), while Norway conceded only 160 (22.8 goals per game)
  • Norwegian goalkeeper Katrine Lunde will tie former teammate Karoline Dyhre Breivang as the second most-capped player at the EHF EURO, with 52 games. Only French captain Siraba Dembele Pavlovic has more games in the competition, this being her 54th
  • provided they win on Sunday, Lunde, left wing Camilla Herrem and line player Marit Malm Frafjord can tie fellow Norwegians Breivang, Linn Kristin Riegelhuth-Koren and Kari Aalvik Grimsbø as the only players with five EHF EURO titles
  • with 48 goals scored in the first seven games, 16 more than Croatia’s Camila Micijevic, Norway’s right back Nora Mørk is poised to become the first-ever player to top the EHF EURO goalscorer standings twice. She also scored the most goals in 2016

Olivier Krumbholz, France coach: “It is a friendly team for the French team. We made a training camp together and they are amazing and so polite. We have very easy contact with the Norwegian players. Stine [Oftedal] was in France a long time. For a few years, we have had a discussion about the programme before the Olympic Games. I like playing against Norway.”

Nora Mørk, Norway right back: “We believe in each other, France are a very good team, they will play physical. We need to prepare very well for this game, because in the final, anything can happen. I am very, very hungry for the gold medal and we want to win this game.”

written by Adrian Costeiu / jh