aletem wrote:Well, we sucked today and played like it didn't matter. I am actually disappointed, because it should have been a victory with at least +5.
And no, the difference between the teams is on the same level as the difference between our female teams.
Then again, a result stands. Romania even lead by +4 so I don't know how can you say a +5 for MKD would've been more suitable.
I beg to differ with your assessment of the difference as well. Romania W would easily put 40 over Macedonia W, whereas Romania M finished only -7 behind and could've easily done less.
aletem wrote:I get people are frustrated that they have to lose against Macedonia (a poor small country), but that's that.
Don't make this kind of assumptions. Everyone in Romania was very respectful of Macedonia even in our stupid sports press. Nobody saw us as favourites. It was just an opponent we stood more chances against than we would've against Norway, Iceland, Croatia, Slovenia.
Any comment about "small" or "poor" is your own take and hence your problem. That's not the way Romanians see Macedonia and certainly not the way we see your handball.
aletem wrote:I actually follow handball since 1997, so I am very familiar with what's happening in that sport beyond my sense of patriotism in that upcoming double.
So it's impossible you missed Popescu's great season in the EHF Cup, where he was the best GK of the Final 4. Or the fact that he was the best foreign GK in France and selected in the All Star game over there. So, he's not really a NO-goalkeeper, like you claimed.
As for the patriotism, sure... but too much of anything can be harmful.
aletem wrote:I am well aware that Romania did well thanks to Pasqual. They weren't even present in the qualifiers for the 2016 (eliminated by Finland?) or last with nill points in the 2014 campaign.
Well, as much as I like Pasqual, I think he chose the bad tactic for this one. I genuinely think he expected too much from a group of players with whom he couldn't implement a system, due to lack of time. I am particularly unhappy with his defensive choice. That defense was clearly unsuitable for our players, but he insisted. That's what opened the way for a lot of very easy Macedonian goals. I think a more classical and compact defense (which our players have done before) would've been better and would've kept the first match tighter. This is why I am saying this playoff could've been different.
About those 2 campaigns you mention, that's where the team was back then. No sense in comparing. A lot of players have changed. There were also some internal things happening at the time.
But you are right about one thing: Romania has a lot of road to cover. 20 years of negligence cannot be repaired by a great coach in 2 years. I think the group of players we have right now is actually pretty gifted (hell, I saw some awesome young 9m shooters in our team and we have a few more in the NL). The problem is systemic and relates to how these players are formed and by who (youth coaches) and finally who do they keep working with in their senior years.