EHF Champions League
|Current season, competition or edition:|
2019–20 EHF Champions League & 2020–21 EHF Champions League
|Founded||1956 (1993 in its new format)|
|Number of teams||16 (Group phase)|
|Level on pyramid||Level 1|
|Current champions|| RK Vardar|
|Most championships|| FC Barcelona|
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 EHF Champions League Men.
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 changed for the 2020/21 season.
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.
Each year, the EHF publishes a ranking list of its member federations. The first nine nations are allowed to participate in the tournament with their national champion. In addition, the tenth spot is reserved for the best ranked national federation of the EHF European League Men. The national federations are allowed to request upgrades for their teams eligible to play in the EHF European League and based on the criteria list the EHF Executive Committee approves six upgrades.
The EHF Champions League is divided into four stages. All participating teams enter the competition in the group phase.
The current playing system has been introduced before the 2020/21 season.
Since the 2020/21 season, the format sees two groups formed, with eight teams each in Group A and B. All the teams in each group play each other twice, in home and away matches (14 rounds in total). The first two teams in Groups A and B advance directly to the quarter-finals, while teams from positions three to six in each of these groups proceed to the play off. The season is over for the last two teams in each group after the completion of the group phase.
The pairings for the play off are decided by the placement of the teams at the end of the group phase (A6 vs B3, B6 vs A3, A5 vs B4 and B5 vs A4). Each pairing is decided via a home and away format, with the aggregate winners over the two legs advancing to the quarter-finals. The higher ranked teams in the group phase have the home right advantage in the second leg.
The pairings for the quarter-finals are also decided by the placement in the group phase (Winner of A5/B4 vs A1, Winner B5/A4 vs B1, Winner A6/B3 vs A2, Winner B6/A3 vs B2). 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 higher ranked teams in the group phase have the home right advantage in the second leg.
The official name for the men's EHF FINAL4 is the EHF FINAL4 Men. The participating 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 a Sunday.
Much like the visual brand identity, the brand sound identity will acoustically connect the various leagues and tournaments which fit under the EHF umbrella. For the EHF Brand Sound, the authors got to the core of "The Sound of Handball" and created a handball sound DNA as the recurring element across all audio-visual applications. The jump shot was identified as the most iconic and defining handball movement.
Through video analysis and motion tracking, the jump shot was extracted into a rhythmic design pattern. There are numerous application opportunities of the brand sound, which will be developed over time. First implementations of the new EHF Brand Sound will be heard in the EHF Champions League. The premium character of this tournament was translated into a modern sound design through a new EHF Champions League sound logo and anthem. Both will come to life in the arena and will consistently complement all audio-visual communications.
The previous anthem for the EHF Champions League is "Hymn of the Champions", used until the end of the 2019/20 season and 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.
European Champions Cup (organised by IHF)
EHF Champions League
Records and statistics
All-time top scorers
- As of 16 August 2020
|660||14||Guðjón Valur Sigurðsson|
- eurohandball.com Hymn of the Champions[permanent dead link]
- "EHF and EHF Marketing strike four-year deal with hummel". www.eurohandball.com. Retrieved 3 July 2020.