EHF Champions League

The EHF Champions League is the most important club handball competition for men's teams in Europe and involves the leading teams from the top European nations. The competition is organised every year by EHF. The official name for the men's competition is the VELUX EHF Champions League, since the VELUX Group began their title sponsorship of the competition in the 2010/11 season.

VELUX EHF Champions League
Current season, competition or edition:
2019–20 EHF Champions League
CountriesEHF members
ConfederationEHF (Europe)
Founded1956 (1993 in its new format)
Number of teams28 (Group stage)
Level on pyramidLevel 1
Current champions RK Vardar
(2nd title)
Most championships FC Barcelona
(9 titles)
Websiteehfcl.com

The EHF coefficient rank decides which teams have access and in which stage they enter.

Eligibility and qualifying

Each year, the EHF publishes a ranking list of its member federations. The first 27 nations are allowed to participate in the tournament with their national champion. The national federations are allowed to request extra places or upgrades from the EHF Cup.

The EHF Champions League is divided into five stages. Depending on the ranking of their national federation and of the criteria list, teams can enter the competition in either qualification or the group phase.

The current playing system will change in 2020/21.

Qualification tournament

Groups of four teams are formed. The number of groups can vary each season. Teams from each group play semi-finals and finals, in a single venue over a weekend. The winning team from each group advance to the group phase, while teams from lower ranks continue in the Men's EHF Cup.

Tournament format

Group phase

Since the 2015/16 season, the format sees four groups formed, with eight teams each in Group A and B and six each in Group C and D. All the teams in each group play each other twice, in home and away matches. The first teams in Groups A and B advance directly to the quarter-finals, while teams from positions two to six in each of these groups proceed to the Last 16. Only the two best teams in Group C and D continue in the C+D elimination knockout round, played in a home and away format, where the winner of Group C meets the second-ranked team from Group D and vice versa. The six winners of the Last 16 stage join the Group A and B winners in the quarter-finals.

Knockout rounds

The pairings for the Last 16 are decided by the placement of the teams at the end of the group phase. The two winners of the C+D knockout round face the second-ranked teams from Group A and B in the Last 16. Each pairing is decided via a home and away format, with the aggregate winners over the two legs advancing to the quarter-finals.

The pairings for the quarter-finals are also decided by the placement in the group phase. The ties are decided through a home and away format, with the four winners over the two legs played in each pairing advancing to the EHF FINAL4. The official name for the men's EHF FINAL4 is the VELUX EHF FINAL4.

The participating VELUX EHF FINAL4 teams are paired for the semi-finals through a draw and play the last two matches of the season over a single weekend at one venue. The two semi-finals are played on a Saturday, with the third-place game and final on the Sunday.

Anthem

The current anthem for the EHF Champions League is "Hymn of the Champions", exclusively written by Austrian film composer Roman Kariolou in 2007. The recording played during the entry ceremony before every game was performed by the Bratislava Symphony Orchestra, conducted by David Hernando.[1]

Winners

European Champions Cup (organised by IHF)

Year Final Semi-final losers
Champion Score Second place Third place
1956–57
Details

Dukla Prague
21–13
Örebro SK

HG Kopenhagen

Paris UC
1958–59
Details

Redbergslids IK
18–13
Frisch Auf Göppingen

Helsingør IF

Dinamo București
1959–60
Details

Frisch Auf Göppingen
18–13
Aarhus GF

Dinamo București

Paris UC
1961–62
Details

Frisch Auf Göppingen
13–11
Partizan Bjelovar

Dukla Prague

IK Skovbakken
1962–63
Details

Dukla Prague
15–13
Dinamo București

Frisch Auf Göppingen

Ajax København
1964–65
Details

Dinamo București
13–11
Medveščak Zagreb

Grasshopper

Ajax København
1965–66
Details

SC DHfK Leipzig
16–14
Budapest Honvéd

Dukla Prague

Aarhus GF
1966–67
Details

VfL Gummersbach
17–13
Dukla Prague

SK Cuncevo

Dinamo București
1967–68
Details

Steaua București
13–11
Dukla Prague

Dynamo Berlin

Partizan Bjelovar
1969–70
Details

VfL Gummersbach
14–11
Dynamo Berlin

Steaua București

RK Crvenka
1970–71
Details

VfL Gummersbach
17–16
Steaua București

Sporting CP

Partizan Bjelovar
1971–72
Details

Partizan Bjelovar
19–14
VfL Gummersbach

MAI Moskva

Tatran Prešov
1972–73
Details

MAI Moskva
26–23
Partizan Bjelovar

SC Leipzig

SoIK Hellas
1973–74
Details

VfL Gummersbach
19–17
MAI Moskva

Oppsal IF Oslo

Ruda Hvezda Bratislava
1974–75
Details

ASK Frankfurt/Oder
19–17
Borac Banja Luka

VfL Gummersbach

Steaua București
1975–76
Details

Borac Banja Luka
17–15
Fredericia KFUM

VfL Gummersbach

Fredensborg/Ski
1976–77
Details

Steaua București
21–20
CSKA Moscow

Fredericia KFUM

VfL Gummersbach
1977–78
Details

Magdeburg
28–22
Śląsk Wrocław

Honvéd

Calpisa
1978–79
Details

TV Großwallstadt
30–28
(14-10 / 18-16)

Empor Rostock

Budapest Honvéd

Dinamo București
1979–80
Details

TV Großwallstadt
21–12
Valur

Dukla Prague

Atlético de Madrid
1980–81
Details

Magdeburg
52–43
(25-23 / 29-18)

Slovan Ljubljana

LUGI HF

CSKA Moscow
1981–82
Details

Budapest Honvéd
49–34
(25-16 / 18-24)

TSV St. Otmar St. Gallen

Helsingør IF

TV Großwallstadt
1982–83
Details

VfL Gummersbach
32–29
(15-19 / 13-14)

CSKA Moscow

Barcelona

Metaloplastika
1983–84
Details

Dukla Prague
38–38
(21-17 / 21-17)

Metaloplastika

VfL Gummersbach

Budapest Honvéd
1984–85
Details

Metaloplastika
49–32
(19-12 / 20-30)

Atlético de Madrid

FH

Dukla Prague
1985–86
Details

Metaloplastika
54–52
(29-24 / 30-23)

Wybrzeże Gdańsk

Steaua București

Atlético de Madrid
1986–87
Details

SKA Minsk
62–49
(32-24 / 25-30)

Wybrzeże Gdańsk

TUSEM Essen

Metaloplastika
1987–88
Details

CSKA Moscow
36–36
(18-15 / 21-18)

TUSEM Essen

Metaloplastika

Elgorriaga Bidasoa
1988–89
Details

SKA Minsk
61–53
(30-24 / 37-23)

Steaua București

SC Magdeburg

HK Drott
1989–90
Details

SKA Minsk
53–50
(26-21 / 29-27)

Barcelona

TUSEM Essen

US Créteil Handball
1990–91
Details

Barcelona
41–40
(23-21 / 20-17)

Proleter Zrenjanin

ETİ Bisküvi

Dinamo Astrakhan
1991–92
Details

Zagreb
50–38
(22-20 / 18-28)

TEKA Santander

Kolding IF

Barcelona
1992–93
Details

Zagreb
40–39
(22-17 / 22-18)

SG Wallau-Massenheim

Vénissieux handball

Barcelona

EHF Champions League

Year Final Semi-final losers
Champion Score Second place Third place
1993–94
Details

TEKA Santander
45–43
(22-22 / 23-21)

ABC Braga

UHK West Wien

USAM Nîmes
1994–95
Details

Elgorriaga Bidasoa
56–47
(30-20 / 27-26)

Zagreb

THW Kiel

Cantabria Santander
1995–96
Details

Barcelona
46–38
(23-15 / 23-23)

Elgorriaga Bidasoa

Pfadi Winterthur

THW Kiel
1996–97
Details

Barcelona
61–45
(31-22 / 23-30)

Zagreb

Celje

THW Kiel
1997–98
Details

Barcelona
56–40
(28-18 / 22-28)

Zagreb

TBV Lemgo

Celje
1998–99
Details

Barcelona
51–40
(22-22 / 29-18)

Zagreb

Celje

Portland San Antonio
1999–00
Details

Barcelona
54–52
(28-25 / 29-24)

THW Kiel

Celje

Zagreb
2000–01
Details

Portland San Antonio
52–49
(30-24 / 25-22)

Barcelona

Celje

THW Kiel
2001–02
Details

Magdeburg
51–48
(23-21 / 30-25)

Veszprém

Kolding IF

Portland San Antonio
2002–03
Details

Montpellier
50–46
(27-19 / 31-19)

Portland San Antonio

Prule 67

Veszprém
2003–04
Details

Celje
62–58
(34-28 / 30-28)

Flensburg-Handewitt

Ciudad Real

Magdeburg
2004–05
Details

Barcelona
56–55
(28-27 / 29-27)

Ciudad Real

Celje

Montpellier
2005–06
Details

Ciudad Real
62–47
(19-25 / 37-28)

Portland San Antonio

Flensburg-Handewitt

Veszprém
2006–07
Details

THW Kiel
57–55
(28-28 / 29-27)

Flensburg-Handewitt

Portland San Antonio

Valladolid
2007–08
Details

Ciudad Real
58–54
(27-29 / 25-31)

THW Kiel

HSV Hamburg

Barcelona
2008–09
Details

Ciudad Real
67–66
(39-34 / 33-27)

THW Kiel

HSV Hamburg

Rhein-Neckar Löwen
2009–10
Details

THW Kiel
36–34
Barcelona

Ciudad Real

Chekhovskiye Medvedi
2010–11
Details

Barcelona
27–24
Ciudad Real

Rhein-Neckar Löwen

HSV Hamburg
2011–12
Details

THW Kiel
26–21
Atlético de Madrid

AG København

Füchse Berlin
2012–13
Details

HSV Hamburg
30–29
Barcelona

Vive Targi Kielce

THW Kiel
2013–14
Details

Flensburg-Handewitt
30–28
THW Kiel

Barcelona

Veszprém
2014–15
Details

Barcelona
28–23
Veszprém

Vive Targi Kielce

THW Kiel
2015–16
Details

Vive Tauron Kielce
39–38 (pen.)
Veszprém

Paris Saint-Germain

THW Kiel
2016–17
Details

RK Vardar
24–23
Paris Saint-Germain

Veszprém

Barcelona
2017–18
Details

Montpellier
32–26
HBC Nantes

Paris Saint-Germain

RK Vardar
2018–19
Details

RK Vardar
27–24
Telekom Veszprém

Barcelona

PGE Vive Kielce
2019–20
Details

Records and statistics

Winning clubs

Performance in the European Cup/EHF Champions League by club
Club
Winners Runners-up Years won Years runner-up
Barcelona 9 4 1991, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999,
2000, 2005, 2011, 2015
1990, 2001, 2010, 2013
VfL Gummersbach 5 1 1967, 1970, 1971, 1974, 1983 1972
THW Kiel 3 4 2007, 2010, 2012 2000, 2008, 2009, 2014
Dukla Prague 3 2 1957, 1963, 1984 1967, 1968
Ciudad Real 3 2 2006, 2008, 2009 2005, 2011
Magdeburg 3 0 1978, 1981, 2002
SKA Minsk 3 0 1987, 1989, 1990
Zagreb 2 4 1992, 1993 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999
Steaua Bucureşti 2 2 1968, 1977 1971, 1989
Frisch Auf Göppingen 2 1 1960, 1962 1959
Metaloplastika 2 1 1985, 1986 1984
TV Großwallstadt 2 0 1979, 1980
Montpellier 2 0 2003, 2018
RK Vardar 2 0 2017, 2019
Bjelovar 1 2 1972 1962, 1973
CSKA Moscow 1 2 1988 1977, 1983
Portland San Antonio 1 2 2001 2003, 2006
Flensburg-Handewitt 1 2 2014 2004, 2007
Dinamo Bucureşti 1 1 1965 1963
MAI Moscow 1 1 1973 1974
Borac Banja Luka 1 1 1976 1975
Honvéd 1 1 1982 1966
CB Cantabria 1 1 1994 1992
Bidasoa Irún 1 1 1995 1996
Redbergslids IK 1 0 1959
DHfK Leipzig 1 0 1966
ASK Frankfurt/Oder 1 0 1975
Celje 1 0 2004
HSV Hamburg 1 0 2013
PGE Vive Kielce 1 0 2016
Veszprém KC 0 4 2002, 2015, 2016, 2019
Wybrzeże Gdańsk 0 2 1986, 1987
Örebro SK 0 1 1957
Aarhus GF 0 1 1960
Medveščak Zagreb 0 1 1965
Dynamo Berlin 0 1 1970
Fredericia KFUM 0 1 1976
Śląsk Wrocław 0 1 1978
Empor Rostock 0 1 1979
Valur 0 1 1980
Slovan Ljubljana 0 1 1981
TSV St. Otmar St. Gallen 0 1 1982
Atlético Madrid 0 1 1985
TUSEM Essen 0 1 1988
Proleter Zrenjanin 0 1 1991
Wallau-Massenheim 0 1 1993
ABC Braga 0 1 1994
Atlético de Madrid 0 1 2012
Paris Saint-Germain 0 1 2017
HBC Nantes 0 1 2018

All-time top scorers

Goals Ssn pld Players
1256 18 Kiril Lazarov
932 16 Nikola Karabatić
861 12 Momir Ilić
838 13 Siarhei Rutenka
806 17 László Nagy
654 9 Mikkel Hansen
633 9 Filip Jicha
608 8 Marko Vujin

Sponsorship

See also

References

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