Handball World Cup 2023: Half-empty halls cause irritation

Katowice, Gdańsk or Stockholm: The 2023 World Handball Championship has many seats left empty in arenas in Sweden and Poland. This actually stood out over the past weekend in Stockholm.

The solely flag: there have been nearly no German followers in Stockholm.
imago photos

Two-thirds of the 20,000 seats within the Tele2 Arena soccer stadium for handball had been empty for the 2 German video games on Friday and Sunday. DHB has a plan on how you can keep away from related photos on the European Championships in January 2024.

In truth, DHB President Andreas Michelmann was fully happy on the ultimate day of the World Handball Championship. “Very good hosts” had been Poland and Sweden, the pinnacle of the affiliation praised the 2 organizers, emphasizing the infrastructure and hospitality. The 63-year-old then added that what could possibly be improved was “going to video games the place your workforce is not enjoying”.

Michelman hit the nail on the pinnacle: though the Swedish and Polish nationwide groups ran in entrance of the complete squad, the stands of the opposite groups typically took up much less area. An common of three,992 followers attended the six German video games within the preliminary and fundamental rounds on the Spodek in Katowice (11,016 seats).

In the quarter-final towards France in Gdańsk (11,409 seats | 5,526 spectators), greater than half the seats had been empty; Two-thirds of the matches towards Egypt (3,604) and Norway (6,260) had been empty on the Tele2 Arena. “You hear the German followers again and again, however in such an enormous area generally it will get a bit misplaced,” mentioned star Julian Koster, who was taken from VfL Gummersbach on Sunday. “And it sounds quiet as a result of they’re unfold out.”

Despite the obvious empty seats, 23,050 followers reported

The IHF World Association most well-liked to concentrate on document numbers quite than vacancies. Dane Per Bertelsen, chairman of the IHF Organizing and Competition Commission, mentioned the 20,000 followers on the Tele2 Arena had been “simply unbelievable”. The Swedish organizers had been additionally happy with the document thrice in a row. They reported an viewers of 23,050 followers for the ultimate between Denmark and France – regardless of seen empty seats and the opportunity of shopping for tickets on-line till the tip.

In addition to issues concerning the corona pandemic and the warfare in Ukraine, many seats had been left vacant within the final spherical, which is not less than partly a home-grown downside. The chaos of the sport plan stopped the followers. 48 hours earlier than the semi-finals, it was unclear which workforce would play the place; Added to that was the absurd journey of holders Denmark, who needed to journey throughout the Baltic Sea to Gdansk for the semi-finals after the quarter-finals in Stockholm, then board a airplane again to the Swedish capital instantly after the sport. closing.

“We simply tried to concentrate on ourselves and never put an excessive amount of effort into it,” mentioned Danish world champion Magnus Landin (THW Kiel), who received the ultimate. DHB sporting director Axel Cromer described the state of affairs as “disastrous”. After extreme criticism, the world group additionally confirmed foresight. “We should get higher at this for everybody’s sake,” Bertelsen mentioned.

Such irritation has been dominated out for the following main males’s handball event, the EHF EURO 2024 in Germany; setting a recreation plan. In addition, DHB is obliged not solely to fill the stands as a lot as attainable, but in addition to fill them on the European Championships of their house nation (January 10-28, 2024). DHBs have to promote 70-75 per cent of single-day tickets to cowl the prices of the principle event.

Germany resists early

The first strategy is to ascertain groups early to present followers scheduling safety. Norway (qualification required) and Germany will play their preliminary spherical in Berlin, Croatia (qualification required) and Sweden in Mannheim, Denmark and Iceland (qualification required) in Munich.

It’s wonderful and we’re excited.

“We are in shut contact with Iceland, there’s a direct connection from Reykjavik to Munich,” Schober defined in Stockholm on Sunday. It is at the moment anticipated to have round 3,000 Icelandic followers. In addition, “intensive measures” are deliberate to advertise the event within the coming months.

DHB is at the moment happy with the interim standing of ticket gross sales. By Sunday, 40,000 tickets had been bought for the opening recreation of the 2024 European Championship on the Düsseldorf Football Arena. More than 1,000 tickets have been bought for video games with out Germany’s participation. “It’s wonderful and we’re excited,” Schober mentioned. In addition to Berlin, Dusseldorf, Mannheim and Munich, Cologne and Hamburg will play.

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