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Tops/Flops France-Denmark: unsinkable Blues, Dika Mem from zero to hero


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Tops/Flops France-Denmark: unsinkable Blues, Dika Mem from zero to hero


Like the reed that bends but does not break. Throughout the Euro, the French team demonstrated its ability to endure events, without ever giving up, without ever ceasing to believe in itself, without ever giving in to any feeling of resignation. However, for a long time, this final seemed destined for the dominant Danes, but incapable of really creating a gap against the gripping Blues. Twice – once in each period – the Scandinavians took a three-goal lead. Twice, the return of the French was almost immediate. This team has no doubts. And in overtime, his mental strength made the difference and broke the opponent (33-31). Whether it's Swedish in the semis, or Danish in the final, whatever, in the end, in handball, France wins!

One of Denmark's main strengths was clearly identified. Namely a tandem of extremely efficient goalkeepers, and complementary given their different profiles. But as a duo, the first period only offered a one-man show, Niklas Landin being invited to wait kindly on the bench for his counterpart Emil Nielsen to stop tormenting the French shooters. With 11 saves at 46% success, the former Nantes goalkeeper had a festival, and all the Blues were there, notably Dika Mem, author of 0 out of 4 at the break, and even Ludovic Fabregas, “Mr. 90% of shooting success” who saw his first attempt rejected by an impressive Nielsen. Fortunately, the Danish goalkeeper's second half would prove less impervious (15 saves in total).


The symbol of this French team, which could just as easily have been in the tops as in the flops. Flop because for an hour, the right-back was only a shadow of himself. Failed to shoot (0 out of 5), hesitant, sanctioned twice for two minutes of exclusion – including one stupidly for a mistake as naive as it was gross –, Dika Mem then completely got through his final. Even at the end of the match, he seemed to refuse to take the shot, his confidence completely at half mast. However, Guillaume Gille decided to leave him on the field. Against all odds. No doubt convinced that at one point, such talent could only turn the light back on. And this came at the start of the second period of extra time, when the Barcelona player scored two goals in quick succession which stunned the Danes. From zero to hero, it's hard to get any clearer.

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