In their red world champion jerseys, Denmark’s handball players started a party marathon after the historic title hat-trick – and even Crown Prince Frederik celebrated in the stands.

The beer was already flowing in the Stockholm Arena after the 34:29 final victory against Olympic champions France, before the big red and white celebration continued after a short night in front of thousands of compatriots in Copenhagen.

“Writing history and doing something that no one else has done before is a little extra,” said world champion coach Nikolaj Jacobsen, touched, and gave his protégés special praise: “This team has played the best handball I’ve played in seen for a very, very long time.”

Danes write handball history

The third gold triumph in a row – a novelty in the 85-year history of the World Cup – he put over the first title win four years ago in his home country. “In 2019 we were more controlling. This was better and more fun,” said Jacobsen. “This is how I want handball to be played. It was a feast for the eyes.”

Under Jacobsen, the Danes have been unbeaten for 28 World Cup games – and there is no end in sight to the winning streak. “He’s an incredibly good coach, but an even better person,” said world-class goalkeeper Niklas Landin from German record champions THW Kiel about Jacobsen. “He can exude a lot of joy, but he can also be very serious. He’s a good friend of the team off the pitch, but there’s no shit with him in training.”

The 51-year-old Jacobsen, who led the Rhein-Neckar Löwen to the German championship title in 2016 and 2017, always knows how to turn a collection of stars like Mikkel Hansen or Mathias Gidsel into a tight-knit unit. “We’re in a good mood all the time. We’re a group that harmonizes very well,” reported Landin.

His goalkeeper colleague Kevin Møller from SG Flensburg-Handewitt also praised the team spirit and the coach. He was just “world class,” said Møller, adding: “You can see how everyone stands together and fights to the last second. I’m proud to be part of this team.”

With Gidsel, the old and new champion also provided the most valuable player of the tournament. The 23-year-old backcourt player from Bundesliga leaders Füchse Berlin was happy after the final, in which he had contributed six goals to victory, but above all about the World Cup title and the reception on the balcony of Copenhagen City Hall. “It’s a childhood dream. That’s what I saw on TV,” Gidsel said.

Boundless jubilation in Copenhagen

The young star was not disappointed: Thousands of fans and onlookers broke into deafening cheers when Niklas Landin beamed and presented the World Cup trophy to the crowd after arriving at the town hall square. One by one, the players lifted the trophy again before being greeted at a reception by Mayor Sophie Hæstorp Andersen with the words “Dear world champions…”. “Some of you already know the way out onto the balcony,” she said.

There was a loud celebration afterwards. “A thousand, thousand thanks for all the support!” Coach Jacobsen shouted at the crowd. “This is fantastic. This is unique,” said Gidsel, stunned by the crowd. “I think this is the greatest moment of my life!” Or as Endgame hero Rasmus Lauge said: “This is complete madness.”

Gidsel was also the top scorer at the finals in Poland and Sweden with 60 goals. Despite his personal merits, he remained very modest: “When I stand there with the World Cup, that’s the only thing I can think about. I play in the world’s best handball team and I’ve had the world’s best players around me. It was easy to score goals with this team.” The hat-trick for the title is above all, emphasized Gidsel: “This victory gives you goosebumps because we did something that nobody else has done before us.”