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Denmark, the Olympic and world champion, were eliminated in the first round of European handball on Wednesday after Hungary beat Iceland 24-18 in Malmo.
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The real slaughter: after France, Denmark! Two of the three 2019 World Cup medallists will miss the main round of this European handball tournament, with only Norway being a survivor. The Danes need to beat the Magyars against Iceland after their two poor performances (a defeat against Iceland and a draw against Hungary). MISSED: Hungary won 24-18. The defending world champions’ meeting with Russia on Wednesday night will not be threatened.
While considered the best team in the world, Denmark won’t necessarily be on the podium this year. Because there are still six months before the Tokyo Olympics, the darling of the Olympic gold medal has naturally set his sights on the supreme goal. But the Danes are of course not ready for a knockout indignity at home, as they play in front of home crowds in the neighbouring Swedish city of Malmö, a Swedish city with a bridge to Copenhagen.
The red-shirted fans were also on hand to push Iceland, but the determination of the Hungarian and the performance of the goalkeeper Roland Mickler (14 stations) and its pivots bens banhidi (8 goals) make a difference. Even after qualifying, the Icelanders are interested in qualifying for the main draw with a two-point win over Denmark. Ultimately, the Hungarians will start the second phase in full force, still in Malmö.
Their opponents will be Norway (2 points), Slovenia (2 points), Portugal (0 points) and Sweden (0 points). In the other group, in Vienna, will face Austria (2 points), Spain (2 points), Croatia (2 points), Czech Republic (0 points), Germany (0 points) and Belarus (0 points). The top two teams from each group will play in the semi-finals in Stockholm.