Montenegro women's national handball team

The Montenegro women's national handball team is the national team of Montenegro. It is governed by the Handball Federation of Montenegro and takes part in international handball competitions.

Montenegro
Shirt badge/Association crest
Information
NicknameZlatne lavice (Golden lionesses)
AssociationHandball Federation of Montenegro
CoachBojana Popović
Assistant coachMaja Savić
CaptainJovanka Radičević
Most capsJovanka Radičević (192)
Most goalsJovanka Radičević (1103)
Colours
Team colours
Team colours
Team colours
Team colours
1st
Team colours
Team colours
Team colours
Team colours
2nd
Team colours
Kit body unknown.png
Team colours
Team colours
Team colours
3rd
Results
Summer Olympics
Appearances3 (First in 2012)
Best result2nd (2012)
World Championship
Appearances6 (First in 2011)
Best result5th (2019)
European Championship
Appearances7 (First in 2010)
Best result1st (2012)
Last updated on Unknown.
Montenegro women's national handball team
Medal record
Olympic Games
Silver medal – second place 2012 London Team
European Championship
Gold medal – first place 2012 Serbia
Bronze medal – third place 2022 Slovenia/North Macedonia/Montenegro
Mediterranean Games
Silver medal – second place 2018 Tarragona Team
Bronze medal – third place 2009 Pescara Team

HistoryEdit

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.

2006–2011Edit

Montenegro has been playing in official competitions since 2006.[1] 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.


For the first time, Montenegro played at the IHF World Women's Handball Championship in 2011. After passing the group stage, Montenegro was eliminated by Spain in the round of 16.

Olympic silver and European gold (2012)Edit

On 11 August 2012, Montenegro won a silver medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. On 16 December 2012, they became champions at the 2012 European Women's Handball Championship in Belgrade.

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.

2013–presentEdit

After two successes in 2012, Montenegro was eliminated by Denmark in the round of 16 at the 2013 World Women's Handball Championship.


Montenegro did well in the 2014 European Women's Handball Championship. After making it to the semi-finals, the team was defeated by Spain. In the end, Montenegro finished in fourth place.

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.

Competitive recordEdit

The Montenegrin national team has participated in many international competitions, including the Summer Olympics, World Championship and European Championship.

Tournament Matches Wins Draws Loss
Summer Olympic Games 13 4 1 8
World Championship 37 22 2 13
European Championship 38 22 1 15
Qualifying matches EC/WC/OG 60 48 5 7
Overall 148 96 9 43

Olympic GamesEdit

Montenegro has participated in two Summer Olympics (2012 and 2016). In 2012, the women's handball team won the first Olympic medal for Montenegro since their independence.

Olympic Games Qualification
Year Pos. Pld W D L Pld W D L
  2012 2nd 8 4 1 3 3 3 0 0
  2016 11th 5 0 0 5 3 2 1 0
  2020 6th 6 2 0 4 2 1 0 1
Total 19 6 1 12 8 6 1 1

World ChampionshipEdit

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.

World Championship Qualification
Year Pos. Pld W D L Pld W D L
  2007 Did not qualify 5 4 0 1
  2009 7 5 1 1
  2011 10th 6 3 0 3 2 2 0 0
  2013 11th 6 4 0 2 DNP
  2015 8th 9 5 1 3 2 1 1 0
  2017 6th 7 3 1 3 2 1 0 1
  2019 5th 9 7 0 2 2 1 0 1
  2021 22nd 6 1 0 5 2 2 0 0
 / /  2023 Qualified DNP
 /  2025 To be determined TBD
  2027
Total 37 22 2 13 22 16 2 4

European ChampionshipEdit

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.

European Championship Qualification
Year Pos. Pld W D L Pld W D L
  2008 Did not qualify 6 4 0 2
    2010 6th 7 4 0 3 6 5 1 0
  2012 1st 8 7 0 1 6 5 0 1
    2014 4th 8 5 0 3 6 5 1 0
  2016 13th 3 1 0 2 6 5 0 1
  2018 9th 6 3 0 3 6 6 0 0
 /  2020 8th 6 2 1 3 Cancelled
 / /  2022 3rd 8 5 0 3 Qualified as co-host
 / /  2024 To be determined TBD
  2026
 / /  2028
Total 38 22 1 15 36 30 2 4

TeamEdit

Current squadEdit

Squad for the 2022 European Women's Handball Championship.[2][3]

Head coach: Bojana Popović

No. Pos. Name Date of birth (age) Height App. Goals Club
1 GK Marina Rajčić (1993-08-24) 24 August 1993 (age 29) 1.78 m 144 4   Siófok KC
4 RW Jovanka Radičević (1986-10-23) 23 October 1986 (age 36) 1.69 m 192 1103   RK Krim
7 LW Nađa Kadović (2003-08-28) 28 August 2003 (age 19) 1.80 m 8 6   ŽRK Budućnost
9 LB Đurđina Jauković (1997-02-24) 24 February 1997 (age 25) 1.85 m 88 326   Brest Bretagne Handball
10 CB Matea Pletikosić (1998-04-24) 24 April 1998 (age 24) 1.69 m 36 34   ŽRK Budućnost
11 LP Ivana Godeč (2001-05-11) 11 May 2001 (age 21) 1.77 m 11 3   ŽRK Budućnost
16 GK Ljubica Nenezić (1997-01-15) 15 January 1997 (age 25) 1.79 m 51 1   SCM Gloria Buzău
21 RW Nina Bulatović (1996-12-09) 9 December 1996 (age 25) 1.71 m 16 1   ŽRK Budućnost
22 LB Andrijana Popović (2002-04-20) 20 April 2002 (age 20) 1.85 m 13 0   ŽRK Budućnost
25 RB Đurđina Malović (1996-05-05) 5 May 1996 (age 26) 1.82 m 39 54   Toulon
26 CB Nataša Ćorović (1999-05-07) 7 May 1999 (age 23) 1.73 m 21 7   ŽRK Budućnost
34 P Tatjana Brnović (1998-11-09) 9 November 1998 (age 24) 1.84 m 60 144   Brest Bretagne Handball
43 GK Marta Batinović (1990-04-20) 20 April 1990 (age 32) 1.85 m 33 1   SCM Gloria Buzău
66 P Ema Alivodić (1996-11-28) 28 November 1996 (age 26) 1.86 m 92 102   CSM București
90 CB Milena Raičević (1990-03-12) 12 March 1990 (age 32) 1.78 m 163 501   ŽRK Budućnost
91 LW Ivona Pavićević (1996-04-21) 21 April 1996 (age 26) 1.67 m 66 76   ŽRK Budućnost
95 LB Ilda Kepić (1995-01-17) 17 January 1995 (age 27) 1.82 m 5 2   ŽRK Budućnost
96 CB Itana Grbić (1996-09-01) 1 September 1996 (age 26) 1.69 m 85 168   Brest Bretagne Handball

Current staffEdit

Head coachesEdit

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.

Coach From To Record* Championship
M W D L Win %
  Nikola Petrović 2006 2008 11 8 0 3 072.73 None
  Gyula Zsiga 2008 2010 13 10 2 1 076.92 None
  Dragan Adžić 2010 2017 92 59 5 28 064.13 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 8 070.00 WC 2017 (6th); EC 2018 (9th); WC 2019 (5th)
  Kim Rasmussen 2020 2021 8 3 2 3 037.50 EC 2020 (8th)
  Bojana Popović 2021 20 8 0 12 040.00 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.

Opponent G W D L
  Angola 4 3 0 1
  Azerbaijan 2 2 0 0
  Belarus 2 1 0 1
  Bosnia and Herzegovina 1 1 0 0
  Brazil 3 0 1 2
  Bulgaria 2 2 0 0
  China 1 1 0 0
  Croatia 6 2 0 4
  Czech Republic 8 6 0 2
  Denmark 8 4 0 5
  Dominican Republic 1 1 0 0
  DR Congo 1 1 0 0
  Finland 1 1 0 0
  France 9 2 0 7
  Germany 3 2 0 1
  Greece 1 1 0 0
  Great Britain 3 3 0 0
  Hungary 4 3 0 1
  Iceland 5 3 1 1
  Italy 3 3 0 0
  Japan 4 3 0 1
  Kazakhstan 1 1 0 0
  Netherlands 2 2 0 0
  North Macedonia 2 2 0 0
  Norway 5 1 0 4
  Poland 8 8 0 0
  Portugal 3 2 1 0
  Romania 6 3 1 2
  Russia 11 4 2 5
  Senegal 1 1 0 0
  Serbia 6 5 1 0
  South Korea 1 1 0 0
  Slovakia 6 5 0 1
  Slovenia 5 5 0 0
  Spain 8 3 1 4
  Sweden 8 5 1 2
  Switzerland 1 1 0 0
  Tunisia 2 2 0 0
  Turkey 1 1 0 0
  Uruguay 1 1 0 0
OVERALL 150 97 9 44

Last update: April 2019.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "RUKOMETNI SAVEZ CRNE GORE (MNE) - Handball Montenegro | EHF".
  2. ^ ""Lavice" počinju pripreme za Evropsko prvenstvo, selektorka Bojana Popović objavila spisak" (in Montenegrin). rscg.me. 24 October 2022. Retrieved 19 October 2022.
  3. ^ "Team Roster Montenegro". eurohandball.com. 4 November 2022. Retrieved 4 November 2022.

External linksEdit