Preview: 5 things about Paris - Chartres
Paris Saint-Germain Hanbdall return to league action on Friday after a month's international break, Les Rouge et Bleu playing host to Chartres at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin. Find out all you need to know about this Liqui Moly StarLigue Round 16 clash.
1 - FORM
The Parisians are at Coubertin once again! After returning to their home court last Sunday for a 30-22 victory over Nîmes in the Coupe de France semi-final, Les Rouge et Bleu will now be looking to keep it rolling with yet another win in the league. Before the international break, during which three of our Parisians crowned European champions, Raul Gonzalez's men had won eveyr single match of the season thus far. However, it won't be easy this Friday against a team trying to move away from the relegation zone.
Chartres will be hoping to build on the momentum they created at the end of 2023. At that time, they stopped a run of six consecutive defeats by overcoming Saran (32-35) in Liqui Moly StarLigue Round 15. Now in 11th place, Chartres are just three points clear of the relegation zone.
2 - KEY STATS
At the halfway stage of the season, the Parisians lead the table in almost every respect. Collectively, the capital club is the clear leader of the Liqui Moly StarLigue, thanks to a perfect winning record over the first 15 games. Raul Gonzalez's men are clinical in front of goal: they have bagged 558 goals, but are also solid in defence. With just 446 goals conceded, the capital club boasts the fifth-best defence in the league.
On the individual front, Luc Steins still tops the league's assists chart with 68, six more than closest pursuer Kylian Rigault. The Dutch international has played a major role in Kamil Syprzak's glorious first half of the season; no fewer than 106 goals make the Polish international the second-top scorer in the Liqui Moly StarLigue. It should be noted, however, that our pivot has spent more than eight hours less on the court than Nemanja Ilic, who leads the table with 111.
3 - MILAN BOMASTAR THE SAVIOUR, BUT CHARTRES STRUGGLE IN ATTACK
Chartres may only have the eighth-best defence in the league, with 467 goals conceded, but they can rely on the solidity of Milan Bomastar. With 144 saves, the Serbian goalkeeper is second in the league. It is in attack that the problem lies for Chartres, who have the second-lowest attacking record in the competition, with 426 goals, just two more than Saran.
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4 - HEAD TO HEAD
Paris's perfect first half of the season is mirrored by their spotless head-to-head record against Chartres. In twelve meetings, Les Rouge et Bleu have won ten times in the league - and twice qualified for the next round of the Coupe de France - against Chartres. In the first match between the clubs this season, Paris could thank an unstoppable Andreas Palicka (17 saves) for the win at the Halle Jean Cochet (27-34).
5 - TO FOLLOW THE MATCH
At the Stade Pierre de Coubertin: our ticket office
Streaming: Handball TV
Social networks: live-tweet
(Credits: J. Azouze/PSG)