Top teams showing up in EOC

It is starting to get really interesting in the European Open Championship. On Thursday morning, it was time for the Main Round to get started and it took off with wins for Sweden and the Faroe Islands.

The Faroe Islands have been identified as one of the strongest teams in the tournament and so far there are no reasons to doubt it. Undefeated in the group stage and they took a very convincing victory when the games in the Main Round began. With 32–21 they beat Belarus.
”It was a good game and we got a great start with some easy goals”, said coach Julian Johansen after the game and continued:
”We had seen Belarus play yesterday with a very offensive defence, so we had the plan to play seven against six and I think it made them look a bit frightened. We managed to score easy goals throughout the first half”.

EOC has received a lot of attention on the Faroe Islands and Johansen is careful to stress the importance of not think too much of yourself.
“We are a very small country and right now have a good group of players which have trained very much. On the Faroe Islands right now everything is blowing away, they are looking at Gothenburg to see the boys and we have a lot of fans here with us too. We need the boys to stay on their feet and work hard because our culture is that we have to fight”.

As far as talking about taking the gold home to the Faroe Islands is not on their minds, at least not yet.
“No, we are not going for gold. We didn’t know the level of the opposition prior to the tournament, so our goal was to do our best and see how far it would take us. Right now we are very happy where we are but of course we want to be as good as we can”.

Simultaneously, with the Faroese win, Sweden played against Italy. The host nation continued to keep its position as unbeaten after winning 22–19.
“In defence, we did a great second half where we had to correct some details and the players responded greatly. Which was fun to see”, Sweden’s coach Tomas Axnér stated.

Erik Malmqvist