The EHF Champions League is back for the 2011-2012 season with the first weekend of Group play. Out of the gate, Polish Wild Card qualifier, Kielce, hosts perennial Hungarian champions Veszprem in a Group B showdown. Kielce is a two goal favorite.
Veszprem at Kielce (-2) (ehfTV: Sunday, 2 October: 3:00 PM CET, 9:00 AM (U.S. East Coast))
Live Broadcast link: http://www.ehftv.com/ehfcl/ec/cl/men/2011-12/live/high/001779
On Demand Broadcast Link: http://www.ehftv.com/ec/cl/men/2011-12/video/001779
Group B could be interesting this year as it may be a legitimate Group of Death with each of the 6 clubs having realistic expectations of earning one of the top 4 slots. Veszprem, Madrid (formerly Ciudad Real) and Chekov have pretty much always advanced out of Group Phase. Berlin and Kielce are relative newcomers, but they clearly have the talent and expectations to do the same. Only Danish side, Bjerringbro-Silkeborg, can be considered an outsider, but they surely have the pedigree to win a few matches.
The Kielce-Veszprem match will be the only one with English commentary, but there are several other matches worth checking out like Chekov(-1.5)-Berlin, Montpellier (-4.5)-Leon and Szeged-Kiel (-6.5). The EHF has a handy page with the links to all the video streams and most of the matches are available “on demand” a few hours after they are completed. To see what’s available for viewing click on the video link at the top of the page and then select the full match option for viewing. On Monday, if you want to catch up you can watch the 25 minute weekly highlight show. Great lunch time viewing at work if your office allows it.
EHF Preview of Week 1 matches: http://www.ehfcl.com/men/2011-12/article/14214/Raise+the+curtain%21
ehfTV broadcast schedule: http://www.ehftv.com/schedule
Note to American viewers: It appears that the MHz Network is not broadcasting Champions League matches this year. We’ll update you if this changes or another network picks up the TV package