Iceland Leaves 2023 Handball Championship with a Victory

iceland handball

The Iceland Men’s National Handball team went out in style yesterday with a 41-37 victory over Brazil.

Unfortunately, Iceland will not be moving past Group II, where it won a place after its initial seeding into Group D.

Iceland will be leaving this world championship with a total of three victories and two losses, and a total goal difference of +11.

Brazil led the way in the first half of the final match, with the score standing at 22-18 at halftime. However, the Icelanders managed to make up the difference in the final 10 minutes of the game, with Bjarki Már, Janus Daði, and Kristján Örn leading in goals.

In an interview with RÚV, Icelandic Men’s Nation coach Guðmundur Guðmundsson said: “We took a good long look at how we were doing and had to really zero in on the goal and make a comeback with that old Icelandic pride. […] The second half will be remembered for a long time since we won it 23-15. It was really just fantastically well played.”

Icelandic Handball Fans Banned from Using Drums

handball iceland 2023

Supports of the Icelandic team at the 2023 World Men’s Handball Championship in Sweden have been banned from using drums in the Gautaborg stadium, Morgunblaðið reports.

See also: Iceland Beats Portugal in Opening Game of World Championship

In a statement to Morgunblaðið, Gauti Sigurgeirsson, a member of the Icelandic national team fan club, said: “The Swedish handball association won’t let us have drums in the stands at the stadium […] But we’re sticking to our plan. We’re going to the stadium and doing everything we can to support the Icelandic national team, with or without our drums. It just doesn’t make sense that all of a sudden we’re not allowed to have any instruments.”

Icelandic fans have so far been happy with the accommodations at the 2023 World Men’s Handball Championship. The championship is being hosted in nine cities throughout both Poland and Sweden. Matches hosted in the Swedish city of Kristianstad, such as the opening match between Iceland and Portugal, allowed fans to support their team with instruments.

Now, fans of the national team are disappointed but determined to continue rooting for “our boys,” as they are affectionately known. While instruments are not allowed in the general stands, however, a special balcony is reserved in the Gautaborg stadium, where the Icelandic fans can drum to their hearts’ content.

Gauti continued to say to Morgunblaðið: “It was just great in Kristianstad. It’s a great town. We got to do everything we wanted and it went really went, but everything changed in Gautaborg. We weren’t allowed to bring any of our instruments when we played Sweden, which definitely has an effect on the support. But we just used our hands and voices instead.”



Iceland Beats Portugal in Opening Game of World Championship

Iceland crowd

The men’s national handball team defeated Portugal in their opening game of the 2023 World Men’s Handball Championship. Left winger Bjarki Már Elísson was chosen man of the match by the IHF.

Tight, right until the end

The men’s national handball team took the stage for the World Men’s Handball Championship, held in Poland and Sweden from 11 to 29 January 2023, yesterday. Iceland started well, gaining a four-goal lead during the 12th minute of the game. Portugal showed spirit, however, and fought back to even the score right before halftime.

Read More: Iceland Review Speaks to Guðjón Valur, One of Iceland’s Most Enduring Handball Stars

The second half was similarly tight. The two teams were neck and neck, until the game appeared to swing in Iceland’s favour during the 42nd minute of the game. Left back Fábio Magalhaes was shown a red card for a cynical foul against Iceland’s Ómar Ingi Magnússon (who was chosen Iceland’s Athlete of the Year in late December). But Portugal kept pushing. They reduced the deficit to zero goals during the 52nd minute – before Iceland pulled away over the final minutes of the game. Final score: 30-26.

Iceland’s supporters dominate the stands

Iceland’s players weren’t the only ones who put in a star performance; the team’s supporters, who seemed to outnumber the Portuguese, were especially vocal during the game. After the win, the crowd stood up to sing Ég er kominn heim; the players were visibly moved.

Iceland will play its second match of the tournament against Hungary tomorrow. Hungary also won their first game of the Championship. Iceland’s team is predicted to go far in the tournament.