THW Kiel: The champions are shown their limits early in the season

Handball THW Kiel

The champions are shown their limitations early in the season

Status: 11.09.2023 | Reading time: 3 minutes

Melsungen’s sensational win against Kiel in the video

The previous surprise team MT Melsungen sensationally wins the top game at THW Kiel. Thanks to an outstanding performance, the Hessians celebrated their fourth win in their fourth game. For Kiel it is the second bankruptcy within a few days. The highlights in the video.

Handball record champion THW Kiel suffered a mini-crisis early in the season and lost twice in a row. Too many mistakes also cost us victory against Melsungen. Is there a new goalkeeper coming?

Five games, two defeats, 6:4 points and fifth place in the table – the start of the season in the handball Bundesliga for defending champion and record champion THW Kiel definitely did not go the way the players and those in charge had imagined. “This is a situation that we didn’t want, but that we will now face,” said THW coach Filip Jicha after the 30:35 home defeat on Sunday against league leaders MT Melsungen.

It was the second defeat in a row for the 23-time German champions. Previously, the 109th Schleswig-Holstein derby was lost to SG Flensburg-Handewitt. THW could have won both games, but then deprived themselves of the fruits of their success.

“Just not good enough”

“What we do at the beginning of the second half is simply not good enough,” said the Norwegian backcourt player Harald Reinkind at Dyn about the game against the North Hesse team – and added with a view to the “Nord-Clasico”: “It was the same as in Flensburg. We lose too many balls and make too many mistakes.” Before the game, Jicha had clearly warned that this shouldn’t happen again against Melsungen.

Unusual: Kiel’s coach Filip Jicha has to deal with two defeats

Source: dpa

The technical errors “did not trigger the defeat, but accelerated the defeat,” said Jicha in his game analysis. What is striking is that the Kiel system does not yet seem to work 100% against self-confident teams. The victories at the start of the season over Balingen, Gummersbach and Wetzlar, each with a difference of eleven goals, belied this. Northern rival Flensburg is always particularly motivated against THW, Melsungen came to the Kiel Arena with a lot of self-confidence.

World class goalkeeper is out

One of the problems also lies in the goalkeeper position. After the injury of Vincent Gérard (adductor), Tomas Mrkva is essentially a lone fighter between the posts. The only available replacement is the inexperienced 19-year-old Magnus Bierfreund. The Czech Mrkva is doing a good job, but there is no second top goalkeeper to give the opposing shooters new tasks during the game. Niklas Landin, probably the best goalkeeper in the world, left Kiel before the season. This is now noticeable.

Lone fighter in the THW goal: Tomas Mrkva

Source: dpa

Since it is not possible to predict how long Gérard’s injury will last, THW officials have already put out feelers for a new goalkeeper, according to information from “Kieler Nachrichten”. As the newspaper reports, Gérard’s French compatriot Samir Bellahcene could be the replacement.

The 28-year-old is currently playing for Dunkerque HGL in his home country. THW managing director Viktor Szilagyi did not comment on an obligation. But he said to Gérard: “With his injury, we no longer talk about weeks, but rather months. We will certainly have to respond to this.”

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“We have to work on delivering our performance in every game,” demanded Jicha after the Melsungen game. The Kielers first have to gain self-confidence in the Champions League games. The first group game will take place on Thursday (6.45 p.m./Dyn) against Croatian champions RK Zagreb. This is followed by the games against Pick Szeged from Hungary (September 21st) and at Eurofarm Pelister in North Macedonia (September 27th).

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The Bundesliga doesn’t continue until September 30th. THW can’t afford a defeat against the Champions League winner SC Magdeburg. Otherwise the gap to the top of the table will become too large too quickly.


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