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Men’s Handball European Championship Betting 2018 – Winner Odds & Predictions

France to deliver gold in Euro's

Sports Betting

The latest edition of the Men’s Handball European Championships starts on January 12th and runs through to January 28th. Sixteen teams will be descending on Croatia to compete at the Championships. This will be the second time that Croatia have played host to the tournament. Heading back to the tournament as reigning Champions are Germany who are 8/1 at Boylesports* (Betting Odds taken from January 12th, 2018 at 4:05 a.m.) to get their hands back on the title this year. The tournament will be played over four different venues and the top three finishers at the event will automatically qualify for the 2019 World Men’s Handball Championship.

Reigning Champion

Germany holds the current title as they beat out Spain in the 2016 Final. That was the second title at the European Men’s Handball Championship for Germany. It was a pretty unexpected result from them too as they were in Pot 3 for the sending only. Tobias Reichmann was the second highest scorer at the tournament and a real stand-out star with 46 goals from 58 shots. Goalkeeper Andreas Wolff was awarded a place in the tournament’s All-Star team for his performances.

Men’s Handball European Championship Betting Odds*

France 2/1, Croatia 11/4, Denmark 9/2, Spain 7/1, Germany 8/1, Norway 10/1, Sweden 25/1, Slovenia 40/1, Hungary 50/1, Serbia 100/1, Macedonia 125/1, Iceland 200/1, Belarus 300/1, Austria 300/1, Czech Republic 300/1, Montenegro 400/1.

Qualification

There is a qualification process to get through to reach the Finals. In Phase 1 of qualification, nine nations were split into groups of three and the top team from each (Romania, Luxembourg and Belgium) of the three went through to a play off round where Israel, Turkey and Finland were already waiting. Finland, Romania and Belgium won through to make Phase 2. The second stage of qualification was made up of seven groups of four and the top two teams from each of those groups went through to the Finals, joined by the best third-ranked team from that second round of qualifying, which in this case was Iceland.

Seeds
Pot 1: Germany, Spain, Croatia, France
Pot 2: Denmark, Belarus, Sweden, Macedonia
Pot 3: Norway, Serbia, Montenegro, Czech Republic
Pot 4: Hungary, Slovenia, Austria, Iceland

Draw

One team from each of the seeding pots get drawn together in a group for the first round of competition. So that is four groups of four teams and the top three from each of those then go through to the Main Round. The Main Round is where the twelve qualified teams are split into two groups of six, Group I and Group II. This is a round-robin affair and then the top two teams from Group I and Group II then move ahead to a semi finals. Things turn to a straight knockout then with the winners of the two semi-finals moving through to the Final, the loser going through to a third-place game. The two third-place teams from Group I and Group II will meet in a fifth-place match.

Group A: Croatia, Sweden, Serbia, Iceland
Group B: France, Belarus, Norway, Austria
Group C: Germany, Macedonia, Montenegro, Slovenia
Group D: Spain, Denmark, Czech Republic, Hungary

Contenders

The usual contenders are at the head of the Market, France are the 2/1 favourites at Boylesports* (Betting Odds taken from January 12th, 2018 at 4:05 a.m.) and they won’t be too unhappy with their group draw. The French were one of the front runners two years ago but ended up coming home fifth as they were beaten out in Group I by Norway and Croatia. They will have to contend with Norway again but should be comfortable in reaching the latter stages of the tournament. The French shook off their disappointments of the 2016 European Handball Championships, by winning the World Championship last year over Norway.

So the French will be up there, while Norway are fairly pricey underdogs for the tournament, but after their big showings in the last two major tournaments, they will have some each way appeal at Boylesports in the tournament outfit. Spain, who have been to the final of the European Championship four times before and have lost all of them, will be hoping for better this time around. They lost the final two years ago against Germany and they were stopped in the quarter finals of the 2017 World championships by Croatia. They have scoring power though so should be in the mix not heartless, but failures perhaps will deter punters.

Croatia have home advantage at the tournament which should help them make a big push. However, they have landed themselves in the group of death in the first round as they take on Serbia, Iceland and Sweden. The Swedes have won more European titles than anyone else has done through the history of the tournament. Croatia went the semi-finals of the World Championship last year when Norway got the better of them in overtime, and they were stopped by Spain in the semi finals in 2016. Croatia are pretty consistent contenders though having finished in the top four in each of the last seven editions of the European Championships.

Denmark, who won the title in 2008 and 2012 are flying under the radar a little bit. That is because they couldn’t find a way out of their main group in 2016, finishing third behind Spain and Germany. Thy failed to make much of a splash at the World Championships last year as well, getting eliminated in the round of sixteen against Hungary. Then there is Germany who, as reigning European champions, were ditched from the first knockout stage at the World’s last year by Qatar.

Outsiders

Norway looks to carry the flag as the best outsider chance and they are appealing each way value. They are on the hunt for their first-ever European title, but then so too are Spain who are priced a lot shorter than the Norwegians are. They finished fourth here two years ago and were so close to getting to the final of the Worlds last season.

Predictions

Of the main contenders there are just question marks over Spain, Germany and Denmark and therefore we are looking no further than the top two. There may not be much to split France and Croatia at the end of the day and with the home support the Croatians will be a threat. However, France do carry the extra overall quality and experience and they have won the European title every other edition since 2006 and can get it again.


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