Elohim Prandi (Paris-SG Hand): “I passed a milestone”

PSG’s left-back Elohim Prandi (24) took another dimension at the beginning of the season. On December 31, 2021, the victim of a serious attack (six stab wounds in the back), the French international, StarLigue player of the month for October, turned around and entered the front door. Interview for Handball magazine and Le Quotidien du Sport.

You scored 14 goals against Dunkirk, which is your record. Do you feel like you’ve reached a new level this season?

I feel good and I’m sure I’m past a phase. I know clearly where I want to go, I will allow myself to get there, it requires consistency and very strong performances.

At what level did a stage pass?

i grew up I have matured as a handball player. I’m working on my shots, understanding the game more, working on a lot of details. I’m in top shape.

Have you worked on anything in particular?

Yes, physically, my tonicity and explosiveness, my shots. We challenge ourselves with goalkeepers. It is important for us shooters to improve our accuracy. It’s whole, but confidence is everything and I know I trust myself and I don’t doubt.

You say you know where you want to go. can you say that?

I want to win as many titles as possible, not just once. I always think of the French national team.

Is the title of top scorer of the championship part of your goals this season?

It’s complicated because I don’t accept penalties. Nevertheless, I am well settled. I will try my best and that would be great, but I won’t be able to score 14 goals every game! (laughs)

Does your attack on December 31 make you look at handball differently?

It also allowed me to question myself, see where I wanted to go and what I needed to put in place to get there. On the pitch, it’s about toughness, consistency and being decisive in important moments. I want to be a great player and you see great players here. This episode was a rough time, but in the end it was a blessing in disguise.

“I want to be a great player and we see the greats in the decisive moments”

When you signed for PSG in 2020, you were eagerly awaited…

They raised me very high in the media. I went from Nimes to Paris, with superstars who monopolized titles and the Final Four. I had responsibilities at Nimes, but we were not the same size. It took me a while, that’s a fact, but better late than never, and I want to respond to the position I claim.

Did you get the impression that PSG were asking questions about you?

I think he expected me to be better, more determined, more important. Now, when I arrived, there were still Mikkel Hansen, Nedim Remili, Niko Karabatic… Luc Steins also came and took an important place. Following these players with years of experience at the world’s highest level is complicated. It’s a matter of time. I could have gotten there sooner, but that’s the way it is.

Did you doubt?

Of course! Sometimes we wonder if we have the level to play in such a club. Although I did not play in the Champions League in Nimes, I played in the European Cups and I had no such problem. I took the time to work over and over and patiently accept my pain.

“Being in the world is not my choice”

Were you disappointed not to be called up to the France squad against Latvia and Italy?

I spoke to Guillaume (Gille). He had his reasons. It motivates me to work harder.

Would you understand not being on the World Cup roster once the season starts?

The choice is not mine. All that matters to me is what I do on the field.

Apart from participation in Euro 2020 (14c), these are missed appointments…

I missed a lot of important moments, the World Cup because of a shoulder problem, TQO because of an ankle. This is very frustrating and scares me. Then I dragged out pubalgia for two and a half months and came to the preparation for the Games with embarrassment, which prevented me from really being 100%. It happens to me after what happened to me… It’s very annoying, but my mother often says that there are no coincidences in life. To reach this very high level, I took time to rebuild myself and reorient myself. I’m on the right track.

Do you have a mental coach?

Nope. I have a very human mother, which allows me to discuss. I also have people who I consider family, who keep me open to myself and make me discover other aspects of my personality. In the end, I realized that I was the one with the cards in my hand.

“No decision has been made regarding the extension with Paris”

Your contract with PSG is over. Where will you play next season?

We will discuss with Paris. Nothing is decided.

Wouldn’t it be in order to go abroad?

Maybe one day, but I play for one of the best clubs in the world and I have the goal of winning the Champions League with this club. This is what I came for, and I firmly believe in it! We will ask ourselves why not stay in Paris for a few more years and then go abroad.

PSG probably have less money than other clubs to win the Champions League this season. Didn’t he miss his chance?

I don’t think so. Players certainly left for goals, financial reasons, living environment. Living in Barcelona is always more attractive than living in Paris and paying less taxes. But me, today I’m French, I play in France, in one of the best clubs in the world, in France, in Paris, I’m not complaining!

No dream club?

I’ve always idolized Germany a lot, but between idolizing and going there…

Paris lost in Toulouse after 35 straight wins in the league. Is there less pressure to hold that record?

Nobody likes to lose, we are competitors! But it is a blessing. We are human. We can be PSG, we can lose. We still have a super tough championship with great players. Toulouse is a very well-established team, we were still in the process. It served as an anchor not to repeat the same mistakes.

Were you surprised by Nantes’ defeat in Limoges?

Yes, although I always got the impression that the championship was more difficult. Anyway, this defeat revives the championship. The three title contenders are on the same level.

Considering their budget, PSG is expected to win the championship every year…

Nantes and Montpellier also have great ways to attract big players. Aix, Nîmes or Chambéry are not lacking in quality. In this championship, anyone can cause trouble for everyone! The level went up one step.

Elohim admires Prandi Karabati

Luka Karabatic was chosen as the captain of the “blues”. The logical choice?

He was already the captain of PSG. Val (Valentin Porte, editor’s note) wanted the captaincy back, and in terms of experience, Luke was the most legitimate.

Could it be Nikola Karabatic?

That’s not what attracted him the most. Everyone knows he’s a leader, and he doesn’t need a bandage on his arm to let everyone know. His career, titles, experience, far surpasses the bandage! He doesn’t need it.

This could be his last season. How does it feel to play with such a player?

I learned a lot with him. He has an extraordinary mind. It is a force of nature. He never stops going after every game, every title. He is always hungry for victory. He is one of the best players of all time. What impresses me is, above all, psychologically. He helped me a lot in this process, strong, stable, zen, calm.

It seems that every season will not be completely successful until PSG wins the Champions League.

We want to win the league because that’s what makes us play in the Champions League. However, the biggest dream is to return the first Champions League to PSG, which has been chasing for ten years. Being a part of this team will last a lifetime and I hope to be a part of it. Most of the time the favorites are not the ones who win in the end, I believe that!

Don’t have anything planned for next New Year’s Eve?

(laughs) No, I’m going to my mother!

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