Slovenia are now firmly established back on the international handball scene after many years fighting to qualify for international events. EHF EURO 2020 is their fifth consecutive appearance at a major competition.
In 2016, they returned to the EHF EURO after a six-year wait, playing their fifth campaign and ranking 14th. In 2017, they qualified for the World Championship for the first time since 2005, where they impressed with their strong performances – including an opening win against France, who were then Olympic silver medallists and EHF EURO 2016 bronze medallists. France went on to win the world title, and Slovenia were the only side that beat them on that path.
In France two years ago, the Slovenians were eliminated at the preliminary round stage on goal difference, with the French team responsible for their elimination. France await Uros Bregar’s team once more at EHF EURO 2020.
Slovenia have showed they can challenge any team and that their main stars are serious threats. However, they have never ranked higher than eighth at a major event, so the first goal is to reach the main round and seek their best-ever ranking.
Recent Team News
Slovenian captain and right back Gros started her playing career at her home club in Velenje. She also joined city club HC Olimpija, where she played from 2007 until 2009. In season 2008/09 her team won Slovenian division 1, where she was voted the best player and the best scorer of that season. In the season 2009/10 Gros transfered to HC Krim Mercator, where for the first time, she played in the EHF Champions League. Right after that season, she moved for two years to Györ, where she twice won the Hungarian National Championship and Cup. In 2012, she also played a final of EHF Champions League with Györ. Between 2012 and 2014, she played in Germany for Thüringer HC; in January 2014 she moved to France to play firstly for Metz and then Brest Bretagne. She was named best right back in the French league six times in a row (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020), and was two-time top scorer. In seasons 2017/18 and 2019/20 she was named in the All-Star Team of the EHF Champions League.
Centre back Zulič took her first handball steps in the handball school of the former Slovenian national team Inna Dolgun. In 2008/09, she moved to RK Krim Mercator, where she played until the end of last season. During this time, she gained experience on loan to clubs from Ivančna Gorica, Ptuj and Ajdovščina. She returned to RK Krim Mercator from the loan in the middle of 2016/17 and since then she was one of the key players of the team. Krim won all the Slovenian titles during this time. Zulič became four times Slovenian national and Cup champion and also won three Slovenian Supercup titles. In all four seasons, her team also advanced to the main round of the EHF Champions League and last season she was named for the best player of Slovenian Division 1. Now she plays for Turkish champions Kastamonu Belediyesi.
After being on court himself, Bregar started coaching at the age of 21. Bregar began as coach of RK Krim Mercator’s youth teams from 2000 to 2005, then became assistant coach for the women’s team for the next five years. He coached a men’s team at RK Grosuplje in 2010/11, before returning to Krim as assistant coach. Bregar ventured abroad to join HC Vardar’s women’s side in January 2014, then moved to Hungary to become head coach for Vac in the summer of 2015. Bregar held that role for half a year, before becoming head coach for Krim in January 2016. On a national team level, Bregar has worked his way through Slovenia’s women’s teams. He began with the Under 14 squad (2006-2008), then progressed to the Under 19 team (2008-2012). In 2012 he became assistant coach of the women’s senior squad and took the role of head coach in 2015.
Past Performance at EHF EURO Events