Gislason’s tactical trick fizzles out – “You’re always smarter in hindsight”
EM debutant Till Kimpke is surprisingly in the starting seven of the German selection in the game against Belarus. But the goalkeeper refuses to save the ball. Only with Andreas Wolff does the turning point come. Afterwards, the national handball coach talks about the personnel.
Dhe first emotional outburst of a German player at the European Handball Championship took place after ten minutes: Till Klimke fired a towel onto the floor, the inclined viewer could feel a little sorry for the keeper of the German team.
Klimpke, 23 years old and under contract with HSG Wetzlar, was surprisingly given preference over Andreas Wolff by national coach Alfred Gislason and was initially allowed to play from the start. But the tactical trick went completely wrong. The tournament debutant didn’t hold the ball.
When the score was 2:7 in the opening game of the European Championship group D against Belarus, the coach corrected his choice of personnel, first taking a time-out after ten minutes and 16 seconds and then also making the change in the German goal: Wolff, hero in the European Championship triumph in Poland six years ago, now allowed to play. It was a small turnaround in the game, which the German team finally won with 33:29 (17:18) after an increase in performance in the second half.
“A very good young goalkeeper”
Before the game, Gislason explained quite clearly why he trusted Klimpke. “Both are in good spirits, I think it’s better to start with Till. My experience with Andy is that he was often very good when he came off the bench.” He’s building on that this time too. The coach was also surprised that Klimpke didn’t parry a ball.
“One is always smarter in hindsight,” said the Icelander. “I put my full trust in Till, he will continue to get his chance because he is a very good young goalkeeper. I wanted Andy in reserve because he knows the Belarus players better. Andy had known for weeks that he wasn’t going to start.”
After all, Wolff saved six throws from his opponent in the almost 50 minutes after his substitution, but his performance could still be improved. In the end there was a work victory for the team around Captain Johannes Golla.
“First of all, it was incredibly important for us to win this game and start the tournament well,” said Gislason. “That was difficult, we got into the game with difficulty, both in attack and in defence,” said the national coach. “Our goalkeepers didn’t come into play at all. We were able to turn the game around with a good attack in the second half.”
Hardly any insights
The outstanding right-winger Kai Häfner, who scored eight goals in ten attempts and was named player of the game, also spoke of a complicated game given the problems in the early stages. “We didn’t know where we were. And if I’m honest, after this game I don’t really know either. That’s why we’re all the happier that we were able to win the game,” said the MT Melsungen backcourt player.
Häfner and Co. have their next chance to find out the true performance potential on Sunday. Then at 6 p.m. (ARD and WELT live ticker) in the second group game in Bratislava against Austria.