The EHF Executive Committee have announced which 16 teams will contest the EHF Champions League Men and DELO EHF Champions League in 2020/21.
In the EHF Champions League Men
, there will be six former winners of the competition – Barça (8), THW Kiel (3), HC Vardar 1961 (2), SG Flensburg-Handwitt, PGE VIVE Kielce and RK Celje Pivovarna Lasko (1 each) – when the group phase of the new season commences on 16-17 September.
After formally approving the 10 teams registered as national champions with fixed places (HC PPD Zagreb, Aalborg Handbold, Barça, Paris Saint-Germain HB, THW Kiel, SG Flensburg-Handewitt, Telekom Veszprém, HC Vardar 1961, PGE VIVE Kielce and FC Porto Sofarma) the EHF Executive Committee evaluated all 14 requests for the upgrades from the second tier EHF European League.
Based on the criteria catalogue with five different fields – venue, TV, spectators, results in past EHF competitions, product management and digital – six requests for upgrades have been approved (HC Meshkov Brest, HBC Nantes, MOL-Pick Szeged, Elverum Handball, RK Celje Pivovarna Lasko and HC Motor).
The remaining eight requests were not granted, however, the EXEC assigned two teams – Orlen Wisla Plock and Dinamo Bucuresti – as substitution teams for the cases where one or more teams will experience serious difficulties with a proper participation and carrying out of home matches in the group phase due to consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Revamped women’s top-flight fixed
While the number of the teams remains unchanged in the upcoming DELO EHF Champions League season
, the 16 participants will play in a revised format in 2020/21, starting in a group phase with two groups of eight.
In total five former champions – Györi Audi ETO KC (5), Buducnost (2), RK Krim Mercator (2), HC Podravka Vegeta and CSM Bucuresti (1 each) – will be on the starting grid of the new season, when the group phase commences on 12-13 September.
Nine teams (Team Esbjerg, Odense Handbold, Györi Audi ETO KC, Metz Handball, Borussia Dortmund, WHC Buducnost, Vipers Kristiansand, SCM Valcea and Rostov-Don) had fixed positions based on the national federations ranking as teams registered as national champions. The Executive Committee approved all of them and continued with the evaluation of all 12 requests for the upgrades from the second tier EHF European League.
The Executive Committee confirmed seven requests for upgrades of the EHF European League clubs to the continent’s top-flight: CSM Bucuresti, FTC-Rail Cargo Hungaria, Brest Bretagne Handball, CSKA, RK Krim Mercator, HC Podravka Vegeta and SG BBM Bietigheim.
The remaining five requests were not granted, however, the EXEC assigned two teams – DHK Banik Most and Storhamar Handball – as substitution teams for the cases where one or more teams will experience serious difficulties with a proper participation and carrying out of home matches in the group phase due to consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Group phase draws
A draw preview and the seeding list with pots will be published in the upcoming days at ehfCL.com