After some very successful years, women's handball in Montenegro looks to be on the brink of change. It is only four years ago, in 2012, that the nation celebrated a truely great year: first Buducnost won the Women's EHF Champions League; then the national team qualified for the 2012 Olympic Games and went almost all the way, only losing to Norway in the final. The icing on the cake became the EHF EURO 2012 in Serbia when the team beat Norway in a thrilling final.
After the disappointing Last 16 elimination at the World Championship 2013 in Serbia, the team was back on track again at the EHF EURO 2014 and made it to the semi-finals. What followed was a bitter 26:25 quarter-final defeat against Norway at the World Championship 2015 and a disappointing group phase exit at the 2016 Olympic Games - something which resulted in head coach Dragan Adzic announcing his resignation - a decision he reversed only a few weeks later.
Nevertheless, with world class players like Majda Mehmedovic in the squad, Montenegro are still a force to be reckoned with at the EHF EURO 2016. Further to the established stars, Adzic has managed successfully to add young players to the team, such as - most recently - Women's 19 EHF EURO 2015 top scorer Djurdjina Jaukovic.
Recent Team News
With the absence of Katarina Bulatovic from Women's EHF EURO 2016, there will be an increased responsibility and likely more court time for experienced right back Andrea Klikovac.
The Vardar player started handball at the age of 9. With Montenegro's junior national team she won bronze at World Championship 2010, one year later she made her debut in the senior national team and won gold at the EHF EURO 2012 in Serbia only another year later.
With Vardar she reached the Women's EHF FINAL three consecutive times since 2014, finishing third on all three occasions.
Majda Mehmedovic has been Montenegro’s standout left wing for the past years. She was already part of the 2012 squad that won gold at the EHF EURO 2012 and silver at the 2012 Olympics.
On the club level, she won the Women’s EHF Champions League with Buducnost in 2012 and 2015. After having played for the Montenegrin powerhouse for almost a decade, she transferred to current Women's EHF Champions League winners CSM Bucuresti at the beginning of the 2016/17 season.
Although she is only 26 years old, Majda Mehmedovic will be one of the most experienced Montenegrin players at the Women’s EHF EURO in Sweden. Even more so, as head coach Dragan Adzic decided to rejuvenate the squad looking ahead to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Dragan Adzic is "Mr. Women's Handball" in Montenegro. Since 2010 he is not only training the women's national team (after having been the youth and junior teams' coach before) but also Montenegrin club handball powerhouse Buducnost.
Based on his achievements - 2012 Olympic silver medallist and EHF EURO 2012 winner with Montenegro as well as two-time EHF Champions League winner with Buducnost - Dragan Adzic is already a legend in Montenegro, however, 2016 was an unusually turbulent year for him.
After Montenegro were knocked out of the 2016 Olympic Games already after the preliminary round, Adzic called it quits and said he would resign - only to reverse this decision a few weeks later.
"I have no regrets about my decision to resign. But after that decision became public in Rio, some things happened. After the analysis and guidance that I gave to the federation, I said that I’m ready to offer my help," said Adzic at the end of September.
"Even if we had won gold in Rio, a very difficult period would be ahead of us. My plan was approved by the federation’s board, as well as by the new president. In front of me is the biggest challenge in my career and I was not ready to retire now."
Past Performance at EHF EURO Events
|*qualified as Yugoslavia|
|**qualified as Serbia & Montenegro|