1 of 5Photo: RADOVAN STOKLASA/Reuters
(Sweden – Spain 27-26) With a penalty kick in the last second, Sweden took the gold at the European Championships. Glenn Solberg is the first Norwegian player to lead a men’s team to win an international gold in men’s handball. Cry for gold.
– It’s totally mad. Solberg tells TV3 I am so proud and moved as tears flow and words are hard to find.
The 48-year-old from Leer led Sweden to the World Cup final at the first attempt a year ago. In Budapest, Sweden won its first European Championship in 20 years after crazy drama in the last minutes and seconds. Niklas Ekberg decided a penalty in the last second, just as the Swedes did against Norway in the decisive match in the main role.
Glenn is a great coach, said super keeper Andreas Balica after the gold medal.
– He gave us a very good value base that we need when they clash, the goalkeeper believes after the European Championships as Sweden were about to crash out of Norway last Tuesday.
But the Swedes reversed the ordeal after all the positive coronavirus tests. Just like they did after the group match that ended in a draw with the Czech Republic.
He deserves all the praise he can get. What he’s been through has been full of adventure since joining as a Swedish coach, said TV3 expert Christian Keeling, and teammate Joachim Boldsen follows:
The best Norwegian men’s coach of all time. The number of results, the number of titles. I don’t think the discussion is that difficult.
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Sweden advanced with two goals five minutes from the end after two goals for the left wing Hambus One. But after 58 minutes, veteran Joan Canelas equalized for Spain before Swedish midfielder Jim Gottfriedson parried the Spain defence.
At the last minute, Spain coach Jordi Ribera “finished” and devised a plan that ended Canelas poorly. Thus, Gottfriedson put together a hot plan on the last leg of the match. Which led to Kanellas being sent to Alpine Lagergren. Swedish penalty kick.
Great last attack. Absolutely raw, Glenn Solberg says, describing Gottfriedson’s “closing speech” as “wonderful.”
Ice cold Niklas Ekberg gave Sweden the European Championship title in the last second. The Kiel star twice tested positive for Corona in the European Championship, but won the match.
– I just thought the ball would go in, says Ekberg.
– It’s indescribable. I spent “100 days in quarantine”. It was pure hell, as he describes after his first gold medal after losing both the Olympic final and the European Championship final.
Ekberg was not in attendance when Glenn Solberg debuted with the World Cup silver medalist last year. At the Olympics, the Norwegian team finished fifth before leading the Norwegian to their first victory since the legendary “Pengan Boys” finished Sweden’s third gold in a row at the European Championships in 2002.
Glenn Solberg once played 122 caps for Norway and was the captain of the Norwegian national team. 10 years ago, he started working with the Norwegian national team recruiting and many of the national team players today. He eventually became an assistant to Christian Berg and was part of the breakout with a fourth-place finish at the European Championships six years ago. But Solberg withdrew from the national team when the Handball Federation refused to combine his national team assignment with St Halvard’s coaching in his hometown of Leer outside Drammen.
The final match with Gottfriedsson – who was recently named the best player in the European Championship – started with the ball hitting the Spanish net. Sweden took the initiative. Not least that Andreas Baleka was the best goalkeeper for the goalkeeper.
The goalkeeper phenomenon from Redbergslid in Gothenburg saved seven – and scored again from his own net – until Sweden went 11-9 eight minutes before the break.
– It is difficult to describe this in words, says Balika after Gold.
But then the Swedish attack game almost stopped. And Spanish striker Adrian Figueras lost the Spanish lead one minute before the end of the first half before Abello Gomez, the best right winger in the European Championship, scored a crazy counter-attack.
Obviously, Spain had the most finishing touches. But Sweden had Baleka’s crazy saves for the so-called 100% chances. Thus, Spain led no more than 13-12 in the second half.
The second half started with a mistake by Jim Gottfriedson. Thus, the Swedes topped the negative stats 5-1. Sweden fared better than in the group match, scoring 13 fouls in the 32-28 loss to Spain.
But the Swedes were still very much involved. After 40 minutes, the score was 18-18 after three quick goals for striker Oscar Bergendahl – a semi-finalist who was chosen as the best defender of the European Championship.
Halfway through the first half, Daniel Peterson sent Sweden into the lead twice before putting Gottfriedsson into the 22-21 game before the end.
The Swedes are back on the initiative. Then came the exciting final minutes.
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