French challenges for the powerhouses

Euro Cup Women, Preliminary Round – Preview

LEN’s new second-tier competition is set to kick off this weekend with the preliminary round. The Euro Cup Women features sixteen teams – but only eight can go through to play the quarter-finals.

In line with the new strategy to offer more playing opportunity for the participating clubs, LEN has launched the Euro Cup Women. In the previous years, only one competition took place, the Euro League, which ended in two finals – the four losing quarter-finalists played in the LEN Trophy Final Four and the winners went for the EL trophy. Instead of this, teams not making the cut in the Champions League Women’s qualifications, then in the prelims, can continue in the new Euro Cup which playing format will be similar to the men’s edition from the quarter-final stage.

In this round those eight teams are the favourites which were dropped from the CL prelims in December. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Eger (HUN) and Ethnikos (GRE) advancing from Group A, the two Hungarians, UVSE and FTC from Group B, Vouliagmeni (GRE) and ZVL (NED) from Group C, and Padova (ITA) and De Zaan (NED) from Group D.

However, these sides will face swift challenges, at least from the four French sides across the respective groups, while last year’s Euro League bronze medallist Padova and De Zaan should be ready for some heated moments in their respective clashes with Spain’s Terrassa.

For more details, free streaming (where the host club provide it) and livescoring visit https://www.len.eu/disciplines/water-polo/euro-cup-women/

Euro Cup Women, Preliminary Round

Group A (Piraeus): Tigra ZF Eger (HUN), Ethnikos Piraeus (GRE), Olympic Nice Natation (FRA), Sirens ASC Malta (MLT)

Group B (Mulhouse): UVSE Budapest (HUN), FTC Telekom Budapest (HUN), Mulhouse WP (FRA), Grand Nancy Aquatique (FRA)

Group C (Lille): NC Vouliagmeni (GRE), ZVL 1886 (NED), Lille UC (FRA), Spandau 04 Berlin (GER)

Group D (Pacos de Ferreira): Antenore Plebiscito Padova (ITA), ZV De Zaan (NED), CA Terrassa (ESP), CA Pacense (POR)

Playing dates: 13-15 January