The Final: Spain-Denmark. Pre-match
Spain - Denmark
Palau Sant Jordi, Barcelona. January 27, 17:15
The greatest handball party in the world take place in Barcelona. The Palau Sant Jordi will hold an unprecedent final between two traditional handball nations but both with few WCh finals in their memories. For Spain, this will be an historical chance to repeat the success Tunisia 2005, when they won their only gold of their showcases. As a home team, they will play in front of their fans, which could mean an extra motivation for Valero Rivera's side. On the other hand, Denmark come to their third world final with the wish of winning their first title.
In the final will face two of the most accurate teams of the championship. Denmark is the only side who have won all their matches (8/8), while Spain was only defeated by Croatia in the last matchday of the group phase.
Valero Rivera and Ulrik Wilbek show their cards
As assured the Spanish head coach, Valero Rivera, "we cannot change the game style that has bring us this final, except for some details". The Spanish coach will use a 6-0 defence again, due to its results in the quarter and semi-finals, hoping that his team will be able to use their best weapon: fast break. Defence and counterattacking will be also the stronger arguments in the Ulrik Wilbek's side, who have reached the final with comfortable ends in practically all their games. Ulrik Wilbek has shared out minutes among all his pupils, so the Scandinavians must be more rested than their opponents.
THE HISTORICAL FACT
- This will be the second edition of a WCh with Spain in the final. The first one was in Tunisia 2005, when they claimed their first and last, so far, gold medal. For Denmark this will be their third chance after being defeated by Czechoslovakia on 1967 and France on 2011.
- This will be the sixth edition of the fixture in a World Championship. The Danes have won 4 times, while the Spaniards reached their last win over them at Egypt 1999.
- Only four national teams have won the title when they were the home team so far (Sweden 1954, France 2001 and Germany 1938 and 2007).
- In case Denmark would lose the final, they would match Croatia and Sweden in the historical ranking of teams with silver medals.
- Denmark, the black beast of Spain in the last years. The last two matches between these two sides in international competitions ended with Danish victory by only one goal. In the ECh 2012, Denmark won 25-24 and, in London 2012: 24-23.
THE STATISTICAL FACTS
- On scoring and conceded goals, Denmark have netted 272 and conceded 209 (+63). Spain have scored 245 and conceded 164 (+81).
- Among all the participants, Denmark is the most accurate in shooting (65%). Spain have a 59% ratio of shooting accuracy.
- Scoring wings. Spain have in their two right wings a warranty of goals. Albert Rocas and Víctor Tomás are the top scorers of the Hispanos with 34 goals each. In Denmark happens the same, but in a more intense way and in their two corners with their two starter wings. Hans Lindberg has scored 35 goals, while Anders Eggert is the top scorer of his team and of the tournament with 52 goals.
- Two Fast Breaking teams. Having played one more game, Croatia is the team with the most fast breaks goals of the tournament (69). Denmark with 65 and Spain with 53 are second and third in this ranking.
- Goalscoring Hansen's absence. So far, the Danish star is not playing his best championship. He is the sixth goalscorer of his team with 20 goals and his shooting accuracy is not the best. With 45% of goals from his attempts, Hansen is the second Danish player with the poorest scoring ratio.