Denmark end eight-year wait for EURO medal
Denmark returned to the EHF EURO podium for the first time since 2014 as they defeated France 35:32 in an extra time bronze-medal match on Sunday in Budapest — and it was a historic moment as the Scandinavian side had never beaten France at the EHF EURO in a total of five previous encounters.
After an equal result at the end of regular time, backs Rasmus Lauge and Jacob Holm as well as goalkeeper Niklas Landin led Denmark to the win in extra time. Lauge and Holm combined for five of the Scandinavian team’s goals in that period and Landin made four crucial saves.
In his first game back after missing four matches due to Covid-19, Kentin Mahe earned the Player of the Match award, after scoring eight and making seven assists. In 26 semi-final appearances across all competitions for France, it is only their fifth fourth-place finish.
France vs Denmark 32:35 (29:29) (14:13)
- Lasse Svan and Dika Mem both netted inside the last minute of regular time, before Denmark dominated the extra time period to clinch a three-goal victory
- driven by saves from goalkeeper Vincent Gerard and goals from wings Hugo Descat and Yanis Lenne, France took an early lead and held Denmark off until Magnus Landin equalised for the first time at 13:13 in the 27th minute. Descat and Lenne scored all of France’s goals up to the 11th minute and combined for 10 in the first period
- Gerard made 11 saves in the opening 17 minutes, recording a rate of 61 per cent at that point. In Denmark’s goal, Niklas Landin started slow but had stopped 12 by half-time, helping their comeback considerably. Their final tallies stood at 18 saves apiece
- France started the second half with three straight goals before Jacob Holm and Magnus Saugstrup spearheaded a Danish comeback. Denmark grabbed the lead for the first time at 19:18 in the 39th minute and from there it was a furious race to the buzzer with the score still level at 29:29 with 13 seconds to go — but neither team could secure the win and the match proceeded into extra time
- in a blow for Denmark, both of their All-star Team representatives were missing. After Mikkel Hansen could not take the court due to injury, Mathias Gidsel was injured in the first minute of the game and left not only the court but the bench for treatment
Denmark earn complete medal collection in a year
From January 2021 to January 2022, Denmark have collected a medal of every colour — gold at the World Championship, silver at the Olympic Games and now bronze at the EHF EURO.
And the EHF EURO medal represents something special for the Scandinavian side, as they have not taken a piece of silverware at the EURO in eight years.
Denmark have not waited this long for a EURO medal since they clinched their first in 2002. That started a run of medal wins — three straight bronze followed by gold in 2008 and then the title again in 2012. Their last prior to the 2022 bronze was the silver medal at the 2014 edition, when they were defeated by France in the trophy game.
It was a very difficult game. We fought until the end of the match and I am proud that we could win a medal after this long month. The difference was that our defence was a little bit better and Niklas Landin was extraordinary today in the goal. The defensive wall also gave him support, but today he was a beast.
It is hard to lose a match after extra-time. It was a crazy game, it was a game on top level with a lot of emotions, a lot of ups and downs, both sides intermediately had control of the game. So I am really disappointed to sit here with the fourth place, but this is sport. We have to say we did not manage to start right in the extra-time, we made simple mistakes, this was the key of the extra-time.