Slovenia’s route to EHF EURO 2020 was achieved thanks to a fine qualification campaign that saw Veselin Vujovic’s side win five and lose just one of their six matches which secured their 12th appearance in 14 European Championships.
Only twice (1998 and 2014) have Slovenia failed to qualify for the tournament, in which they have some memorable moments.
In 2004, as hosts, Slovenia made it all the way to the final, only to find Germany too strong. However the silver medal won remains of the biggest achievements in Slovenian handball.
A bronze medal from the 2017 World Championship, a third place at the 2013 World Championships and a sixth place at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio also rank high among their accomplishments, and with a number of the current squad playing in some of Europe’s top leagues, the national team has plenty of potential for another run to the final stages in 2020.
Vujovic has a squad with plenty of youth and experience and the aim at EHF EURO 2020 is to again compete with the so-called ‘bigger nations’ in the hope of causing an upset or two. With talented individuals, including Barca Larissa’s Jure Dolenec, then who knows how far Slovenia could progress this year.
Recent Team News
Left-handed right back Jure began his career with RD Mercury before moving to Gorenje Velenje, where he led the Slovenian outfit to the quarter-finals of the EHF Champions League. His performances alerted the attention of some of Europe's biggest clubs and in 2013 Dolenec moved to Montpellier. With the French side he won the 2014 and 2016 League Cup and reached the fina of the EHF Cup. With his reputation enhanced further, a move to Spanish giants Barcenlona followed in 2017. Made his debut for the national team in 2011 and was part of the team that won bronze at the World Championships in France in 2017.
Talented pivot who has already scored over 150 goals for the national team. Played for Skofja Loka, Gorenje Velenje and Montpellier before joining Pick Szeged. With Gorenje he helped win two national championships and he won the Coupe de la Ligue with Montpellier in 2013/14. This will be Matej’s second EURO event having previously played in 2016.
After a surprising last-minute parting with Veselin Vujovič, the Slovenian handball federation opted for Ljubomir Vranjes and signed a four-year agreement up to 2024 with the 46-year-old Gothenburg-born coach, ensuring the federation’s aim of a long-term relationship. Vranjes is also at helm of IFK Kristianstad and in the past he had a short stint as head coach of Serbia and most recently Hungary, during which he eliminated Slovenia in the World Championship play-offs. Vranjes had just a couple of weeks to work with the team before leaving for his home town Gothenburg, where Slovenia will face Poland, Sweden and Switzerland in group F of the Men’s EHF EURO 2020.
Past Performance at EHF EURO Events