Hungary seek first title, co-hosts Germany aim to claim the throne at home

01 Jul. 2023

Hungary seek first title, co-hosts Germany aim to claim the throne at home

After 114 games played, five venues and four cities, it all comes to this – the final two games in Max-Schmeling-Halle in Berlin.

Co-hosts Germany have a chance to win the third IHF Men's Junior World Championship title after they succeeded the same in 2009 and 2011. Hungary, on the other hand, are eyeing their first gold medal at the World Championship and they are eager to take it in front of Germans fans.

After being defeated in their semi-final games at Germany/Greece 2023, Iceland and Serbia will play for the bronze medal for the exciting farewell to the flagship competition in a Group G rematch.


  • 18:00 CEST Hungary vs Germany

Hungary and Germany are coming into the final with a perfect streak after seven games played at the World Championship, and one side will welcome their first defeat. Co-hosts German are having an eighth player on their side – their fans who are carrying them through thick and thin.

Germany started the path to the final in Group B, effortlessly winning over Tunisia, Algeria and Libya. In the Main Round Group I, they narrowly defeated well-known opponents France and had a strong defensive outing against Croatia, earning first place in the group.

The quarter-finals delivered the third Scandinavian side, and once again, the Germans knew the exact recipe to shut down Denmark. In the semi-finals, they took advantage of Serbia's one-on-one misses.

The Hungarians were equally successful in Group E. They beat Argentina and Norway at the start, not allowing their opponents to pass the 22-goal mark, and for the last group game, they also left Denmark disappointed. Sweden and Bahrain were their next victims in the Main Round Group III, they eliminated Croatia with a strong finish in the quarter-finals and lastly Iceland.

Both sides have one of the best defences of the competition, with strong goalkeeping options. Ludwig Lasse and David Späth on one side, and Krisztián Mikler and Kristóf Palasics for Hungary. Tim Freihöfer remains Germany's top scorer (35 goals), just like Bence Imre (33 goals) on the Hungarian side.

Hungary have never won the World Championship but their closest time to the gold medal was at the 1977 World Championship when they finished second. Finishing at least second, it will be great progress for the team that was fifth at the M20 EHF EURO 2022 last year. The same goes for Germany, who were seventh at the European championship and they hope to bring the third world title to the country.

Bronze-medal match

  • 15:30 CEST Iceland vs Serbia

It will be an interesting clash for the bronze medal at Germany/Greece 2023, as the powerful Serbian generation take the Icelandic side, the unbeaten team until the semi-finals. It will be the rematch of the Group G game when Iceland beat Serbia 32:29, making the Serbian journey to the semi-finals more challenging.

The Icelanders had a tougher start than expected against Morocco, only to have an easier time against Chile. The third game of the group delivered their bronze-medal match opponents Serbia, and Iceland beat them by three goals. In the Main Round IV, they clinched the win over co-hosts Greece by the narrowest of margins (29:28), beat Egypt by the same result, and eliminated Portugal.

Serbia had an easy task against Chile and Morocco in Group G and suffered a defeat against Iceland for a tough start in the Main Round. However, Đorđe Teodorović's team stepped up the gear and in do-or-die games defeated Egypt and Greece, earning a place in the quarter-finals. Before their defeat against Germany in the semi-finals, they were the more dominant side against the Faroe Islands.

One of the best attacks of the competition, netting 33.71 goals per game on average, and second-best defence with 25.71 goals conceded, will try to stop Andri Mar Runarsson (29 goals) and Símon Michael Gudjónsson (29 goals), Iceland's top scorers. Serbian main forces then were Miloš Kos (11 goals) and Luka Krivokapić (15 saves).

Iceland have a chance to win their first World Championship medal since 1993 and they are determined to end the 30-year stint. Serbia, the bronze medallist from the M20 EHF EURO 2022 want to add another medal to the cabinet before saying goodbye to the junior level of handball.