In the Main Round’s first match in Koprivnica, beat
The first scorer in the game was France’s Drevy Paschal, precise from the seven-meter line in the fourth minute. Stolen ball in Serbia’s next attack and he scores again and puts France up by two. Serbia’s first scorer was Aleksa Veselinović putting the ball in France’s net in the fifth minute. France’s three-goal series in the next three minutes forced Aleksandar Radosavljević to call a time out. It took Serbia five more minutes to score a new goal – Uroš Kojadinović was precise from the seven-meter line. By the end of the 11th minute, France’s Paschal stole Serbia two balls and put them in Nikola Ćirović’s net. Although they slowed down towards the end, at the half-time, thanks to Loic Spady’s key saves and well-built actions, Eric Quintin’s team had a lead (12:15).
Serbia came back more concentrated and determined but France continued to score keep the lead. Serbia’s series caused some turmoil among France’s players as their opponents’ came very close (22:24). Into the last ten minutes, Serbia had a suspended player while France had a three-goal lead. Both teams were giving their best to score and secure a win. France had better luck and took a win (26:31).
Serbia’s best player was Nikola Stefanović and France’s was Sadou Ntanzi.
Winners’ top scorer was Sadou Ntanzi with eight goals and for Serbia Stefan Petrić and Nikola Jeremić, each five.
France player, Sadou Ntanzi: In the end, we respected everything that the coach said. We found something with our team to get the freedom in our game and win the match. The next match will be against Croatia, it’s going to be big game, especially because Croatia play in their home, in front of their fans. It feels good to win the award too, but I was really tired in the end. I’m very proud of my teammates to, and our goal is to win a medal and the entire competition.
France coach,Eric Quntin: I‘m very positive about this game. We are improving and we know it’s difficult to be consistent in each game. The beginnings were very good, and then we try to work mentally on our game. Tomorrow there is one more game to play. It’s great to play such a great team, we take a lot of pleasure in playing these games. We watched them, they play very well. Just overall, a great team.
Serbia player, Nikola Stefanovic: Our technical errors made the difference, and they took advantage of it. They punished us with counter-attacks, especially because we missed some easy shots, penalties etc. France managed to take advantage of that the right way. We thought we can deal with them, and I still think we are on their level. Our start today was poor, they were terrific on the other end. We will fight against Denmark, we know they beat France.
Serbia coach, Aleksandar Radosavljevic: I don’t why my players respected France that much. We opened the match poorly and our head wasn’t in the game. We were finishing our attacks too quickly, especially when you’re down by 2. That’s not the way you play against France, we needed to be more organized, like I asked the boys to do in some situation. They are all young players, and I’m sure they gave their best. Jovica Nikolic didn’t play well today, which means we were around 20% weaker. I thought we were going to do better today versus France, we put our hopes in this match to surprise France. We have to do our best against Denmark.