|Nickname||Zlatne lavice (Golden lionesses)|
|Association||Handball Federation of Montenegro|
|Assistant coach||Maja Savić|
|Most caps||Jovanka Radičević (192)|
|Most goals||Jovanka Radičević (1103)|
|Appearances||3 (First in 2012)|
|Best result||2nd (2012)|
|Appearances||6 (First in 2011)|
|Best result||5th (2019)|
|Appearances||7 (First in 2010)|
|Best result||1st (2012)|
|Last updated on Unknown.|
|2022 Slovenia/North Macedonia/Montenegro|
Montenegro's women's national handball team was formed in 2006, shortly after Montenegro gained independence. It was founded upon ŽRK Budućnost Podgorica, a club with numerous European trophies, which produced many famous Montenegrin players.
Montenegro has been playing in official competitions since 2006. They played for the first time during the qualifying tournament for the 2007 World Women's Handball Championship in Cheb, where they finished second with four wins and one defeat. A year later, Montenegro did not qualify for the 2008 European Women's Handball Championship after a defeat in the playoffs against Croatia. The same result occurred at qualifiers for the 2009 World Women's Handball Championship in China, as Montenegro lost to Sweden in the playoffs.
Montenegro's first significant success came in 2010. After passing the qualifiers without any defeats, the team participated in the 2010 European Women's Handball Championship in Denmark and Norway. Montenegro finished in sixth place, with 46 goals from Montenegro's Bojana Popović.
Olympic silver and European gold (2012)Edit
At the 2012 Summer Olympics, Montenegro passed the group round with two defeats but won elimination matches against France and Spain. In the final match, Montenegro was defeated by Norway 23–26. With their second place title, Montenegro won the first Olympic medal for Montenegro since their country became independent. Bojana Popović and Katarina Bulatović were prominent players on the team during this tournament.
At the 2012 European Women's Handball Championship in Serbia, Montenegro won its first title at a major handball championship. In the semi-finals, Montenegro defeated Serbia 27–26. In the finals, Montenegro defeated Norway 34–31, winning the championship. The players Katarina Bulatović and Jovanka Radičević played significant roles in the team's victory. With 56 goals, Bulatović was the top scorer of the championship.
Montenegro won both medals, in London and in Belgrade, with head coach Dragan Adžić.
Montenegro made significant strides in the 2015 World Women's Handball Championship. After a notable win against Hungary 32–15, Montenegro eliminated Angola in the round of 16. However, in the quarterfinals, Norway defeated Montenegro 26–25. That was the first performance of Montenegro in the quarterfinals of a World Women's Handball Championship.
At their second appearance in the Summer Olympics, Montenegro did not perform as well, in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. With five defeats during the group stage, Montenegro finished in nearly last place.
After the Olympics, Montenegro made big changes to the team and recruited many new young players produced by ŽRK Budućnost. The first main competition for the newly formed team was at the 2016 European Women's Handball Championship, where Montenegro had the youngest team. With one win and two defeats, the team finished in 13th place.
In November 2017, The Handball Federation of Montenegro stated that the new head coach of the national team would be Per Johansson instead of Dragan Adžić, who had served the team for seven years. As a coach, Adžić led Montenegro to nine big international competitions, winning gold during the 2012 European Championship and silver during the Summer Olympics the same year.
With a new head coach, Montenegro finished sixth in the 2017 World Women's Handball Championship, with equal wins and losses, 3–1–3. The next year, they played at the 2018 European Women's Handball Championship in France but did not succeed. After six games, Montenegro finished the tournament in ninth place.
|Summer Olympic Games||13||4||1||8|
|Qualifying matches EC/WC/OG||60||48||5||7|
Montenegro has participated in six World Championships. After failing to qualify for championships 2007 and 2009, they have participated in six consecutive tournaments. The best results Montenegro had were in 2015 and 2017, when they played in the quarterfinals.
|2007||Did not qualify||5||4||0||1|
|/ / 2023||Qualified||DNP|
|/ 2025||To be determined||TBD|
Montenegro has participated in seven European Championships. After having failed to qualify for the European Championship 2008, they have participated in all subsequent tournaments. Montenegro was the European champion in 2012, the bronze medalist in 2022 when was a co-host along with Slovenia and North Macedonia, and a semi-finalist in 2014.
|2008||Did not qualify||6||4||0||2|
|/ / 2022||3rd||8||5||0||3||Qualified as co-host|
|/ / 2024||To be determined||TBD|
|/ / 2028|
Head coach: Bojana Popović
- Head Coach: Bojana Popović
- Assistant Coach: Maja Savić
- Fitness Coach: Danica Delić
- Goalkeeping Coach: Mirjana Milenković
- Physiotherapist: Andrija Damjanović
- Physiotherapist: Mitar Vujović
- Physiotherapist: Anđelka Lekić
- Head of Delegation: Arijan Efović
Since independence, Montenegro has been led by six different coaches. During the first years, the head coach was Nikola Petrović. After Petrović, Montenegro was led by Gyula Zsiga and then by Dragan Adžić, who was the most successful head coach.
|Dragan Adžić||2010||2017||92||59||5||28||64.13||EC 2010 (6th); WC 2011 (10th); OG 2012 (2nd); EC 2012 (1st); WC 2013 (11th); EC 2014 (4th); WC 2015 (8th); OG 2016 (11th); EC 2016 (13th)|
|Per Johansson||2017||2020||30||21||1||8||70.00||WC 2017 (6th); EC 2018 (9th); WC 2019 (5th)|
|Kim Rasmussen||2020||2021||8||3||2||3||37.50||EC 2020 (8th)|
|Bojana Popović||2021||20||8||0||12||40.00||OG 2020 (6th); WC 2021 (22nd), EC 2022 (3rd)|
* Data are only for official matches (qualifiers, European Championship, World Championship, Olympic Games).
Notable former playersEdit
Record against opponentsEdit
Since independence, Montenegro played official games against 38 different teams. The only national team against which Montenegro has never played is Brazil. Below is the list of the performances of Montenegro national handball team against every single opponent.
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||1||1||0||0|
Last update: April 2019.
- "RUKOMETNI SAVEZ CRNE GORE (MNE) - Handball Montenegro | EHF".
- ""Lavice" počinju pripreme za Evropsko prvenstvo, selektorka Bojana Popović objavila spisak" (in Montenegrin). rscg.me. 24 October 2022. Retrieved 19 October 2022.
- "Team Roster Montenegro". eurohandball.com. 4 November 2022. Retrieved 4 November 2022.