Five things on PSG Handball - Aalborg
Time for the EHF Final4! This weekend, Paris Saint-Germain Handball are at the Lanxess Arena to take part in the EHF Champions League showdown (the semi-finals take place on Saturday and the finals on Sunday). Thus, our team enter the last four against Aalborg (in the other match, Nantes face Barcelona).
1 - Back to Cologne
Les Rouge et Bleu are now regulars in Cologne! Indeed, they will be participating in their fifth Final4 in the last six seasons. The last time was in December, on the occasion of the rescheduled 2019-20 edition. Raul Gonzalez's men took third place, beating Veszprém in the third-place play-off (26-31). In fact, the capital club have always finished at least on the podium (third in 2016, second in 2017, third in 2018 and third in 2020). They have scored 225 goals, including 49 from Mikkel Hansen, our top scorer at this event. Finally, some of our players have already won this competition: Nikola Karabatic (Montpellier, Kiel, Barcelona), Viran Morros (Ciudad Real, Barcelona), Dainis Kristopans (Vardar Skopje) and Vincent Gérard (Montpellier).
2 - The opponent
Aalborg, on the other hand, will be making their first appearance at the Lanxess Arena. But this lack of experience is made up for by some quality players, and among them is former Parisian Henrik Mollgaard. The Danish international (World Champion in 2019 and 2021, Olympic gold medallist in 2016), played for Paris for three seasons, all of which saw him crowned French Champion. Elected best defender at Euro 2016, he has just repeated the feat in the Champions League and is part of this season's All-Star Team (alongside Dylan Nahi and Mikkel Hansen). Add in the attacking qualities of Nikolaj Laeso (his team's top scorer with 61 goals) and it's easy to see how the Danes have managed several big results in their European campaign, including taking out Bundesliga leaders Flensburg.
3 - Aalborg's run
The draw for the group stage was not kind to Aalborg, who were drawn alongside Vardar Skopje (reigning European champions), THW Kiel (eventual winners of the 2019-2020 edition), as well as Barcelona and Nantes (two sides in the Final4). However, they did very well and managed to finish fourth in Ggroup B, with some good performances, such as their win at the Veszprém Arena (30-32). The rest of the tournament was not easy either, as they had to face Porto in a very tight double-header, which saw the Danes go through thanks to the away goal rule. In the quarter-finals, they turned in a very good performance by defeating Flensburg, with a nice win on home turf (26-21) and resilient qualities away from home (33-29).
4 - Head to head
So far in the EHF Champions League, Paris Saint-Germain Handball have won all their encounters against Aalborg (four out of four). The first meeting was on 15 October 2017 (26-33). That day, Les Rouge et Bleu won and could count on an excellent Thierry Omeyer, who made an incredible double save. A few months later, it was Uwe Gensheimer who turned-on the style to clinch another win (31-28), firing 10 from 11. Last season, the Parisians won two more times (37-24; 29-32), with 13 goals from Mikky, who will wear the colours of the Danish club from 2022, over the two meetings.
5 - To follow the match (throw-off at 15:15):
• Television: Eurosport Player
• Live tweet: our official page