In the first game of the fourth round in VELUX EHF Champions League, Aalborg Handball first visit to Velenje ended with a convincing win 30:25, which puts the Danish champions well on the way to the last 16.

Slovenian champion started the match without their injured captain Niko Medved but the rest of the back line was ineffective. Ole Erevik (eight saves) on the other hand had a great start with a couple of great blocks. Despite being designated only attacking duties, Velenje’s best player, Klemen Cehte (six goals) struggled with his shots and Ivan Vajdl called his first timeout in the 10th minute, at 6:2 for Aalborg. A change of defense from 6-0 to a 3-2-1 managed to contain the Danes and Gorenje caught up. Emir Taletovič (11 saves in total) had some amassing saves and almost managed to surprise Erevik with a long range effort from his own 6 meter area. It was 10:10 and 6:6 in saves in the 24th minute. However, Aalborg continued with great defensive effort and inspired fast break action – Morten Slundt (eight goals)was the leader in a new 5:1 run at the end of the half, as the teams went on a halftime break at 11:15.
In the initial period of the second half Aalborg extended the lead to 16:11, so the pressure was on the home side. Guests’ defense completely shut down Gorenje’s wings and effectively punished every mistake the Slovenians made in offence (turnovers were 11:5 in favor of the Danes), fast breaks proving to be the weapon of choice for Aalborg. Richard Kappelin (five saves) picked up where Erevik had left off and the best Gorenje could muster was a three-goal deficit. Staš Skube’s (eight goals) attacking form was not enough for the hosts, who did manage a run of 4:1 just before the final minutes with pressing in defense, but any hopes of at least a point for the home team were dispersed when Havard Tvedten (seven goals) once again lifted the goal margin to five in the 55th minute at 27:22. From that point on it was smooth sailing for Aalborg. The Slovenian champions are now under added pressure before their trip to Naturhouse La Rioja in November, while Aalborg will want to cement third place in Group D in their next match at home against Drott Halmstad.

21-year-old Aalborg player Martin Larsen has undergone his second cruciate ligament surgery in his left knee in just one year. The surgery went as planned and ahead of him is a long-term rehabilitation.

– Here a few days after the surgery, I already started with the hard work, although it is of course limited in what I can in the first weeks after surgery. I will do everything to get back on the handball court again, although I know that it takes extra time when it is the second cruciate ligament injury in the same knee

says Martin Larsen, who will not put date on when he’s back on the court . Martin Larsen’s knee injury occurred in the home game against Skanderborg Handball two weeks ago.

RK Gorenje Velenje:
Taletovič 13 saves, Cehte N. 1, Medved, Burić S., Burić B. 3 saves, Cingesar, Cehte K 6., Skube 8, Golčar 2, Šoštarič 1, Dobelšek, Gams, Nosan, Oštir, Dujmovič 3, Bećiri 1.

Aalborg Handball:
Cappelin, Pedersen 3, Slundt 8, Krejberg, Tvedten 7, Jensen S., Bagersted 3, Erevik, Larsen 7, Engelbrecht, Jensen C. 1, Barud 1, Jensen B.