The World Cup extension is said: “Should get difficult in the Swedish third league”

The World Handball Championship will be expanded from 24 to 32 teams this year.

Now the expansion is being seen as we will see many “laughter matches” with Sweden among others involved.

Corruption is behind it, says expert Charlie Sjöstrand.

“Substandard national teams from substandard federations are legitimized with championship places in exchange for votes and money, of course,” says the C More expert.

In the 2019 World Cup, France beat Australia 46-7, Norway defeated Cuba 47-16 and Spain beat Kazakhstan 43-16.

That has been a common result in the women’s handball World Cup over the years when the blueberry nations are so numerous on most continents that some still qualify for the World Cup.

Nevertheless, the International Federation (IHF) has chosen to also expand the Women’s World Cup this year from 24 teams to 32.

VM devalues

When the World Cup kicked off on Wednesday with the match between the host nation Spain and Argentina (the rest of the starting field enters the tournament on Thursday and Friday), Argentina only managed one goal in the last 26 minutes when the home team won 29-13.

Enlargement is now being criticized.

– The last handball championships need are more matches, especially more insignificant matches and that is exactly what we get with so many teams, and that the quality of many of the teams is far too low, says Charlie Sjöstrand, expert on C More.

– I think they would have kept the format with 24 teams. The reason I like the European Championships more than the World Cup is that there will be more good matches. In the WC, there will be far too many overtaking, he says Johanna Ahlm, VM-expert i Viaplay.

Per Johansson is the former national team captain and now coach in Russian Rostov-Don.

– There are at least six teams too many for us to avoid these fantasy figures. There can be about ten matches like this. It must not be a devaluation of the World Cup. For the European nations, it will be almost impossible to miss a World Cup now, he says and continues:

– You grew into the suit with 24 teams in a pretty good way on the women’s side but you are definitely not ready for 32 teams.

Sweden will start its World Cup against two real blueberry nations: Uzbekistan (Friday) and Puerto Rico (Sunday). For example, the Uzbeks lost to South Korea in the Asian Championships (which also constituted the World Cup qualifiers) by 45-19, the same South Korea as Sweden outclassed in the Olympics by 39-30.

– Uzbekistan and Puerto Rico had had a hard time asserting themselves in the Swedish third league, says Johansson.

C More expert Charlie Sjöstrand.

China got wild card

From an official point of view, it is said that the World Cup will be expanded in order for the sport of handball to grow and that its Olympic status may be threatened if it is not considered global but only becomes a European matter.

Martin Frändesjö, colleague of Ahlm in the Viaplay studio during the WC, is on that track.

– I’m split. But I think the sport must grow outside Europe if handball is to survive in the Olympics. It is a complicated sport to be learned, which takes time and then we have to be forgiving with a lot of uneven matches in the World Cup in the future.

Swedish team captain Carin Strömberg:

– It’s a bit double: for handball in general, it may be good, but for every single match and the excitement in it, it is not as fun.

The IHF and its infamous President Dr Hassan Mustafa’s dream is for the sport to become big in large countries and markets such as the USA and China. That’s why the USA got a wild card for the men’s WC in January and that’s why China now gets the equivalent of the women’s WC, even though they were not even in the qualifiers.

Sjöstrand believes that corruption is the real reason for the expansion of the World Cup.

– For whose sake the World Cup is being extended, one may ask. Dr. Hassans, is the answer. IHF is a miniature Fifa. Substandard national teams from substandard federations are legitimized with championship places in exchange for votes and money, of course. The money is of course the key point, he does not really need the votes from the smaller unions because Sweden, Denmark and Germany also give him their support, which is of course regrettable, says Sjöstrand.


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The World Cup extension is said: “Should get difficult in the Swedish third league”