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Olympia: How the German handball players declared bankruptcy

Sport No chance in the quarterfinals

How the German handball players declared bankruptcy

Status: 6:56 p.m.

Debacle in the quarterfinals – German handball players fail in Egypt

The medal dream of the German handball players has burst. The team of national coach Alfred Gislason lost their quarter-finals against outsiders Egypt 26:31 and had to return empty-handed after a poor performance.

The top of the association had issued the dream of Olympic gold, but the selection clearly missed the noble goal. “Defense, attack, goalkeeper, galling: We never got back to normal,” says right winger Timo Kastening.

KJust before the end, Karim Hendawy showed his superiority provocatively clearly. After the Egyptian goalkeeper had once again superbly parried a throw from Marcel Schiller, he took a step towards the German lying on the ground and indicated with his index finger: Nothing works for you today. Egypt was leading 27:21 at this point. A few minutes later the North Africans were dancing arm in arm in the center circle.

“It’s difficult for me,” said Johannes Bitter when asked about the performance of his opponent after the game. When asked, Germany’s goalkeeper paused and stuck: “No, I don’t want to say anything about that.” Hendawy’s gestures in the game were apparently bad. In addition, there was the disappointment about the early departure.

The Olympic Games continue after the disappointing 26:31 against Egypt without the German handball players. In the quarterfinals, Alfred Gislason’s team never found its normal form; Above all, the poor defensive performance and two bad goalkeepers in the German goal blocked the team’s way to the semi-finals. “We haven’t got what we can. The Egyptians brought their insane physicality to the field from the start. We couldn’t hold back at any time, ”Bitter admitted without further ado.

Bad body language

In fact, the big goal of the semifinals was almost out of reach after the first few minutes. While Egypt’s goalkeeper got his hands on the balls several times in the last second, his front men punished the gaps in the defense mercilessly. Germany was quickly behind 1: 6.

03.08.2021, Japan, Tokyo: Handball: Olympia, Germany - Egypt, final round, quarter-finals, in the Yoyogi National Stadium.  Germany's Marcel Schiller comes to the goal.  Photo: Jan Woitas / dpa-Zentralbild / dpa +++ dpa-Bildfunk +++

Egypt’s outstanding goalkeeper Karim Hendawy (left) expects a throw from Germany’s left winger Marcel Schiller

Source: dpa

Body language and demeanor were already very lousy at this point and not worthy of a self-declared gold candidate. Right winger Timo Kastening mercilessly listed the grievances afterwards: “Defense, attack, goalkeeper, galling: We never got back to normal.”

The starting position had been quite good: with a victory in the final group game against Brazil, the German selection had avoided the duel with world champions Denmark at the last moment. Instead, Egypt, the supposedly easier lot. But Gislason had already warned before the game: “This is a very good team.” After all, his team only won just under 29:27 in the last Olympic test three weeks ago.

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Brutally disappointing: goalkeeper Andreas Wolff (left) and captain Uwe Gensheimer

Against the North Africans, the balls flew reliably past Andreas Wolff and Bitter in the German goal, especially in the first half. What was also noticeable: The Egyptians (70 percent) were much more efficient in their degrees than the German team, which only put a good half of its throws in the goal. In addition, Egypt was allowed to finish directly at the circle more often, while Gislason’s players tried their luck mainly from the back area. There, however, playmaker Philipp Weber only seldom succeeded in staging his two halves.

“That is of course bitter”

Even after the break, the German team lacked the necessary consistency to turn the game around with its own run. Whenever the team around its best thrower Julias Kühn (6 goals) had worked a little, the Egyptians followed up with quick goals against the insecure defense. A real rebellion, as one can expect in an Olympic quarter-finals, did not materialize. In the final phase, Egypt around Ali Mohamed played itself into a frenzy against Germans who had no chance.

At 21:27 at the latest, nobody on the German bench behind Gislason believed that they would reach the semi-finals. It was a small declaration of bankruptcy by the Germans that day. “That is of course bitter. We didn’t deserve to progress today and didn’t achieve our goal, ”emphasized the national coach, contrite.

TOKYO, JAPAN - AUGUST 03: Alfred Gislason, coach of Team Germany looks dejected as he leaves the field of play after losing the Men's Quarterfinal handball match between Germany and Egypt on day eleven of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Yoyogi National Stadium on August 03, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

National coach Alfred Gislason after the end

Quelle: Getty Images

The game against Egypt was the end of a tournament in which Germany’s handball players conceded two wafer-thin defeats with only one goal difference against the top teams Spain and France, solved the compulsory tasks against Argentina and Brazil solidly and actually only really convinced with the deserved win against Norway. What remains is a feeling that it is not quite enough for the world’s top handball at the moment.

“It’s disappointing that we didn’t make it. There is no doubt that we have the potential, but we have used it far too seldom, ”said Bob Hanning, Vice President of the German Handball Federation. He had formulated the gold dream of Tokyo briskly, in the end he had to realize that it wasn’t much more than hot air.

03.08.2021, Japan, Tokyo: Handball: Olympia, Germany - Egypt, final round, quarter-finals, in the Yoyogi National Stadium.  Germany's Johannes Golla (l) and Paul Drux react after the defeat.  Photo: Sergei Grits / AP / dpa +++ dpa-Bildfunk +++

Johannes Golla (left) and Paul Drux mourn the missed opportunity

Source: dpa

With a win, the Germans would have met France again in the semifinals. The great chance to take revenge for the unfortunate appearance in the preliminary round. Instead, the wait for the targeted Olympic victory at the DHB continues for at least three years.

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