The 16th European Women’s Handball Championship will be co-organized by Austria, Hungary and Switzerland from 28 November 2024 to 15 December 2024. Hungary will host Europe’s best handball players for the third time after 2004 and 2014, while Austria and Switzerland will be making their debut in this role. It will be the fourth time the continental tournament has been co-hosted, but the first time 24 teams have competed for the final title.

The first European Championship was held in 1994 in Germany with 12 teams. The last time three nations, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Slovenia, hosted the tournament in 2022, the last European Championship to feature just 16 teams.

Qualification for the European Championship

The European Championship qualification tournament lasted from October 2023 to April 2024. The three host countries Austria, Hungary and Switzerland, as well as the winner of the European Championship, Norway, are individual participants of the tournament; so teams from 31 nations fighted for the remaining 20 places.

In the last stage of the qualification system the 31 teams were split into eight groups of four (the group drawn was held on 20 of April 2023), with the winners and runners-up qualifyied for the EC, together with the four best third-placed teams.

(The four individual participants of the tournament played matches in the Euro Cup series).

The official draw of the European Championship was held on 18 April in Vienna.

The groups for the European Championship:

Group A, Debrecen (HUN): Sweden, Hungary, North Macedonia, Türkiye
Group B, Debrecen (HUN): Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Czechia
Group C, Basel (SUI): France, Spain, Poland, Portugal
Group D, Basel (SUI): Denmark, Switzerland, Croatia, Faroe Islands
Group E, Innsbruck (AUT): Norway, Austria, Slovakia, Slovenia
Group F, Innsbruck (AUT): Netherlands, Germany, Island, Ukraine



Europe’s top 24 teams will play their group matches, starting on 28 November, in two groups per city, total of six, in Basel, Debrecen and Innsbruck, until 3 December. The two best seeded teams from each group (12 teams in total) will advance to the main round, which will be held in two groups, in Vienna and Debrecen, starting on 5 December.
The top six teams will take part in the final weekend of the European Championship in Vienna (13-15 December): the first two teams in each group will go through to the semi-finals and fight for medals, while the third-placed teams will play for 5th place. The final of the European Championship will take place on 15 December in the Wiener Stadthalle.

Medal history

So far, five nations can boast European titles, with Norway leading the medal table with nine gold medals, Denmark three times, France, Hungary and Montenegro one each. Norway has the most medals, with nine golds, three silver and one bronze.

In total, 14 countries have won at least one medal.

In the last 10 tournaments, Norway has come out on top eight times. They were dethroned by France at home ground in 2018 and Montenegro in 2012.

Hungary has won the gold medal in 2000, also has won bronze in 1998, in 2004 on home soil and in 2012. Although Austria has won bronze in 1996, 2024 will be their first continental tournament since 2008. Switzerland made their debut at the 2022 European Championship with a 14th place finish.