The Algerian national team has booked its ticket for the 27th IHF Handball World Championship- Egypt 2021 after winning the bronze medal in the 2020 African Nations Cup which was held in Tunisia. They had also made 14 appearances in the World Championship where their best achievement was being ranked in the 13th place in the 2001 edition at France.
Algeria’s French coach Alain Portes, who took over the responsibility of the team in 2019, seeks to show the North African team in the best possible way, after their six-year absence from participating in the World Championship.
Portes talked to Egypt 2021 official website: “Of course, the next world championship will witness great competition, and during the past six years, Algeria did not qualify for the last two tournaments, so we want to show our best performance against the strong teams and we are happy with this opportunity.”
“The draw for the tournament is definitely difficult and it is clear that Portugal and Iceland are among the strongest teams , so we will fight against Morocco in the first match and then we will try to make a surprise in front of our other opponents.” Portes added
On his opinion of the current level of his team before competing next January, the Algerian coach said: “We acheived the bronze medal in the last African Nations Cup and that was good and we wanted to complete the team building in the last period, but the Corona pandemic crisis made us waste a lot of time and I am not sure were we are today. “
The French coach has a clear strategy in the World Championship that he spoke of: “I think I will rely on the experienced players by connecting them to young players with high potentials and who will learn a lot in this tournament,” Portes explained.
Regarding the preparations and the preparatory program several months before the world championship, he said: “We will start training with local players in Algeria and then play international friendly matches abroad in Tunisia and Poland, and during the international break we will gather professional players and prepare well in order to increase the team’s chemistry and harmony when they play together “
Portes has a clear goal in the Egypt 2021 World Championship, as he revealed: “We will try to qualify for the second round, and if this is not possible we will strive to get the best possible ranking place, so let’s not forget that Algeria finished last in its 2015 appearance”.
On Egypt’s organisation of the next tournament with the participation of 32 teams for the first time in the history in light of the emerging Corona virus crisis, the French coach praised the preparations and the organisational aspect and said: “I trust the Egyptians as they know how to organise major competitions. I had an experience with the Tunisian national team in the 2010 edition in Egypt and it was ideal, I know that the Egyptians will organise the upcoming World Championship seriously and professionally.” He admitted.
Alain Portes has a message for the fans of Algeria before the World Championship, where he commented: “We will prepare ourselves as best as we can to give Algeria a positive image in front of the world, The players are very enthusiastic and know their big responsibility towards the Algerian people , so let us trust and support them.” He concluded.