Group phase, VELUX Champions League

05.02.2014, Group D, Logrono, Spain

Naturhouse La Rioja 25:23 Aalborg Handball (13:10)

Naturhouse La Rioja has achieved a crucial victory against Danish champions Aalborg, with 25-23, which keeps their hopes of moving to the next round of the Champions League alive. Jota González’s men managed to hold the advantage on the scoreboard thanks to an outstanding defensive work.


From the first minute Naturhouse La Rioja took the lead and facing each play with intensity, their lead reach up to four goal (12-8). Aalborg crashed again and again against the wall of a huge Jorge Martinez and marched the entire first half in tow. On the break the hosts had three goals lead (13-10).

But the Danish champions did not give up. They woke up in the second half and appeared as they finally put their ranks in order, which were led by Larsen and Jakobsson. Aalborg leveled the score to 15-15. But Naturhouse La Rioja was not overcome by pessimism and charged again spurred on by the fans of the Palacio de los Deportes de La Rioja for another two goal lead (22-20).

The final minutes were very exciting. With 24-23 in the bright , Aalborg stumbled on three occasions and surrendered to the great defense and goalkeeper of Naturhouse La Rioja, who were definitely instrumental in this victory that brings the Spanish team one step closer to the next phase.


25 – Naturhouse La Rioja (13 +12 ): Jorge Martinez; Petrus ( 2), Tioumentsev (6 ), Luisfe, Garabaya ( 3), Pedro Rodriguez ( 3), Ángel Fernández ( 6), Aguinagalde ( ), Migallón Sanchez ( 1), Arrieta ( 1), Patrianova, Rial, Masachs, Romero ( 1) and Eilert ( 2).

23 – Aalborg (10 +13 ): Kappeling ; Tvedten (2 ), Bagersted ( 5), Larsen ( 3), Jakobsson ( 1), Christian Jensen, Baroud, Torp (), Pedersen, Slundt (9 ), Simon Jensen, Mork ( 1), Stig Jensen ( 2) and Engelbrecht (1).

Referees: Dentz and Reibel (France).

Spectators: 2,500
Palacio de los Deportes de La Rioja.

05.02.2014, Group D, Velenje, Slovenia

RK Gorenje Velenje 29:36 HSV Handball (13:19)

HSV Handball showed a superior appearance in the first match of the second part of VELUX Champions League season against Gorenje in Velenje. At the Slovenian champion RK Gorenje Velenje , before 2,100 spectators at the Red Hall Velenje Hamburg champion won by 36:29.


In the first half , Gorenje played on a eye level with Hamburg  , until a 6-1 run enabled the 19:13 half-time lead for the VELUX Champions League titleholder. In the second half, the home side came up again, but good combinations in attack were unsolved problem for Velenje’s defense. Best offensive power on Hamburg side was Adrian Phal with six goals . The Slovenes Stas Skube scored seven goals and was most successful in his team.

RK Gorenje Velenje: Taletovic ( 31 – 60th ); Buric B. ( 1st – 30th ); Skube 7, Papez 5/1, Cehte, K. 4, Sostaric 4, Beciri 3, Buric, S. 2, Golcar 2, Gams 1, Dujmovic 1, Cehte, N., Medved, Nosan, Dobelsek, Ostir,

HSV Handball: Bitter ( 1st – 30th ); Cleverly ( 31 – 60th ); Pfahl 6, Cañellas 5/1, Schröder 5, Mahé 5, Djordjic 4, Lindberg 3, Lackovic 2, Flohr 2, Toft Hansen 2, Dominikovic 1, Markovic 1, Duvnjak, Nilsson, Jansen

Referees: Jiri Novotny / Vaclav Horacek (Czech Republic)

Post match:

Martin Schwalb ( HSV Handball coach ):

” After this preparation, it had to finally start again, my boys now need the competition and have done well today. I am not happy with some things. We still have to improve to compete in Wetzlar. We know that and we will. “

Adrian Pfahl ( back player, HSV Handball ):

“It is a pity that we have held Velenje for so long in the game, with all due respect. Mainly this has happened by our own mistakes. We’ve got far too many simple counter-attacks. However, we had not so much time to us prepare together properly. But we deserved to win and that was our goal.”

Ivan Vajdl (Gorenje Velenje, head-coach):

“In the first half we kept pace with the guests and then fell in the last minutes and allowed to depart. We made some technical errors, which a team of Hamburg will conveniently punish and make a difference elusive. In the second half we were simply too worn, but could in any way jeopardize the German advantage.”

Staš Skube (Gorenje Velenje, middle back, player):

“We are pleased with the first 20 minutes of the first half and in general with others. Showed that we can play against Hamburg, but we just made too many mistakes. Overall, we left a good impression and the audience came into their own.”