President Andreas Michelmann in an interview about the Handball World Cup

Do you like what the men’s national team is showing?

We’re playing a good World Cup and by reaching the quarter-finals we’ve achieved our first goal. The team exudes lightness and enthusiasm, and we’re glad we’re with them Yuri Knorr have a middle man who can become a world leader. But over the past few years we found that we were very good at developing good players but not very good at developing very good players. For the men it’s now about developing the top top talent for the thirties.

The former Vice President of the German Handball Association DHBBob Hanning, said in relation to the players: “The country needs new guys.” …

We have them. Almost 80 percent of the current team were not in the first squad two years ago.

The accent is not on “new” but on “types”.

Guys they become when they’re successful. I don’t know if everyone knew Lukas Mertens before he threw a grenade in the first game. If he keeps playing like this, he’s also a guy in his own way. Andi Wolff is also a guy who doesn’t appear that regularly with us because he plays in Poland. I see someone like Julian Köster – we have to make sure that we don’t hype them up too much. These are different types than the ones we know from the noughties…

… how different?

Maybe more disciplined.


Yes, maybe from their point of view. John Golla is like a positive Christian Schwarzer. From the type. Committed, combative. And he’s only 25.

Andreas Michelmann is President of the German Handball Federation.

Andreas Michelmann is President of the German Handball Federation.

Image: picture alliance / Nordphoto GmbH / friend

When you say guys come from success, is DHB doomed to succeed?

It’s not about should, it’s about being. We are a sport that thrives on success. It’s not about experiences, it’s about results. The goal at the four home tournaments in the decade of the handball is to reach the semifinals.

What’s next after the decade of handball with the DHB?

We haven’t thought about what comes next. The entire ensemble of tournaments, beginning with the Junior World Championships this summer and ending with the Men’s World Championships in 2027 (the European Championships will also take place in Germany in 2024/ed.), is intended to show how good and diverse we are in terms of sport, but that should also be a big advertising block for our sport. Please don’t forget the 2025 Women’s World Cup. If young people find their way into handball through these tournaments, we won’t see the effects until much later. With these four major events, this decade of handball is also a decade that points to the future. The focus in the 1930s was less on the events and more on the development of competitive sport.

A detour to the women: The DHB has dissolved the commission that dealt with the allegations of abuse in women’s handball. When will you continue the workup?

We want to start a new commission immediately after the World Cup, in February if possible. It will amount to five people, although not all positions will likely be filled. In all haste, we want to do this carefully. At DHB, we have a clear conscience that we have nothing to hide.

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