Bulgarian Superliga 2017-2018

  • Far from knowing anything for certain apart from a few new signings, I will write down the teams that, unless surprising changes occur till October, should play in the Superliga this season.

    Neftochimik 2010 (Burgas) REIGNING CHAMPION - 2018 CEV Champions League
    Marek Union-Ivkoni (Dupnitsa)
    Dobrudzha 07 (Dobrich)
    CSKA (Sofia) - 2018 CEV Cup
    Levski (Sofia) - 2018 CEV Challenge Cup
    Arda (Kardzhali)
    Minyor (Pernik)
    Montana (Montana) - 2018 CEV Challenge Cup
    Pirin (Razlog)
    Investbank Teteven Volley (Teteven)
    Cherno more (Varna)
    Hebar (Pazardzhik)



    Neftochimik 2010 Burgas

    Head coach: Nayden Naydenov
    Setters: Georgi Bratoev, Dimo Dimov
    Opposites: Petar Hristov, Oleksandr Statsenko (Ukraine) (released in December 2017)
    Attackers: Denis Karyagin, Andrey Nikolov, Georgi Petrov, Valentin Bratoev, Viacheslau Charapovich (Belarus) (released in December 2017)
    Middle blockers: Nikolay Kartev, Vasil Atanasov, Iliya Petkov
    Liberos: Teodor Salparov, Svetoslav Tomov

    Marek Union-Ivkoni Dupnitsa

    Head coach: Ivan Tasev
    Setters: Svetoslav Stankov, Konstantin Nechev (released in December 2017), Georgi Topalov (as of January 2018 )
    Opposites: Dimitar Dulchev
    Attackers: Christophe Mukunzi (Rwanda), Stanislav Velichkov, Angel Velkov, Svetoslav Ivanov, Sergey Sergiev
    Middle blockers: Borislav Apostolov, Alberto Slavchov, Preslav Yordanov
    Liberos: Hristo Kolev, Georgi Mihaylov

    CSKA Sofia

    Head coach: Alexander Popov
    Setters: Vladimir Stankov, Stefan Stoyanov
    Opposites: Ventsislav Georgiev, Dobrin Vasilev, Ivan Krachev (as of November 2017)
    Attackers: Stanislav Petkov, Ivaylo Stefanov, Yani Georgiev, Plamen Shekerdzhiev
    Middle-blockers: Hristo Tsvetanov, Krasimir Gaydarski, Andrey Nikolov, Todor Kostov
    Liberos: Martin Bozhilov, Mario Stoyanov

    Pirin Razlog

    Head coach: Severin Dimitrov
    Setters: Stilyan Asenov, Vladimir Panev, Francisco Soteldo (Venezuela)
    Opposites: Yordan Zhelyazkov, Iliyan Prespov, Deivid Krastev
    Attackers: Blagovest Katrandzhiev, Georgi Elchinov (universal), Radoslav Popov, Boyan Ivanov, Ivan Velev
    Middle blockers: Georgi Chalakov, Kostadin Gadzhanov, Martin Krastev
    Liberos: Petar Karakashev, Martin Bergov

    Levski Sofia

    Head coach: Vladimir Nikolov
    Setters: Nikolay Manchev, Lyudmil Benov, Daan van Haarlem (Netherlands) (as of January 2018 )
    Opposites: Smilen Mlyakov, Zhelyazko Apostolov (universal), Ivan Pankov
    Attackers: Simeon Aleksandrov, Samuil Valchinov, Martin Pavlov, Gordan Lyutskanov (universal), Evgeniy Bannov (Russia, universal) (as of December 2017)
    Middle blockers: Valentin Blaginov, Alexander Kordev, Miloslav Dimov, Teodor Bogdanov (as of November 2017)
    Liberos: Martin Ivanov, Tsvetan Bonev


    Head coach: Daniel Peev
    Setters: Konstantin Abaev (Russia), Delcho Raev
    Opposites: Kirill Kletc (Russia)
    Attackers: Zlatko Kyossev, Asparuh Asparuhov, Martin Penev, Georgi Mihalev, Leon Tonchev
    Middle blockers: Ivan Latunov, Borislav Nakov, Adrian Anachkov
    Liberos: Dobromir Ivanov, Kristiyan Petrov, Ivan Dimov

    Arda Kardzhali

    Head coach: Ivan Halachev
    Setters: Soner Yashar, Raycho Raev, Georgi Dimitrov, Vladimir Lobutov
    Opposites: Ivan Zamfirov
    Attackers: Kiril Hadzhiev (universal), Kristiyan Penchev, Simeon Topuzliev, Nikolay Kolev, Georgi Tatarov, Stefan Bashev
    Middle-blockers: Mladen Kavaldzhiev, Nikolay Mironov
    Libero: Vladislav Lukarevski

    Dobrudzha 07 Dobrich

    Head coach: Petar Penev
    Setters: Hristo Enkov, Denimir Dimitrov
    Opposites: Zhulien Georgiev, Petar Hristoskov
    Attackers: Dimitar Marinkov, Martin Mechkarov, Dimitar Mateev (universal), Kiril Meretev, Neven Neshev (universal) (as of December 2017)
    Middle blockers: Svetoslav Arnaudov, Denis Chavdarov, Teodor Yordanov, Georgi Gospodinov
    Liberos: Hristo Hristov, Nikolay Todorov, Damyan Kolev

    Minyor Pernik

    Head coach: Petar Dragiev
    Setters: Viktor Kostadinov, Pavel Ivanov, Alexander Petrov
    Opposites: Ivan Damyanov (universal), Bozhidar Slavchev (universal) (released in December 2017)
    Attackers: Plamen Dragiev, Georgi Stoyanov, Ivaylo Ivanov, Yulian Petrov, Martin Tsvetkov
    Middle blockers: Zahari Nikolaev, Stefan Chavdarov, Kristoffer Petrov
    Liberos: Metodi Metodiev, Velizar Emilov

    Investbank Teteven Volley

    Head coach: Petar Mechkarov
    Setters: Lyubomir Agontsev (released in December 2017), Hristo Petkov
    Opposites: Emiliyan Mirchev, Iliyan Ivanov
    Attackers: Kamen Kamenov, Danail Buchkov, Ivan Kostov, Tsvetelin Tsvetanov
    Middle blockers: Georgi Levenov, Angel Neev, Kristiyan Maslarov
    Libero: Anton Vasiliev

    Hebar Pazardzhik

    Head coach: Atanas Petrov
    Setters: Nemanja Stefanovic (Serbia) (released in December 2017), Plamen Hristov, Lyubomir Agontsev (as of December 2017)
    Opposites: Mincho Minchev, Lyuboslav Simeonov
    Attackers: Aleksandar Ljaftov (FYR of Macedonia), Iliyan Bozhkov, Martin Simeonov, Kostadin Bishurov
    Middle blockers: Ventsislav Trifonov, Martin Paliyski, Ivan Tasev, Petar Bachvarov
    Liberos: Ivaylo Lalov, Dafin Kotsakov

    Cherno more Varna

    Head coach: Viktor Karagyozov
    Setters: Stefan Georgiev, Yoan Kairyakov
    Opposites: Stefan Ivanov (universal)
    Attackers: Yavor Genov, Kaloyan Balabanov, Alexander Iliev, Emiliyan Georgiev (universal)
    Middle blockers: Nikolay Kolev, Yordan Atanasov, Milen Petkov (universal), Trayan Ivanov
    Liberos: Martin Ivanov, Simeon Dimitrov

  • The Bulgarian Supercup, featuring the champions Neftochimik 2010 and the Cup holders Dobrudzha 07, will take place on 30. September in Plovdiv. The championship starts on 6. October and this is the first round draw (also confirming the participants because as usual there had been no information given beforehand).

    1st round:

    Pirin vs. Cherno more
    Minyor vs. Hebar
    CSKA vs. Investbank Teteven Volley
    Levski vs. Montana
    Marek Union-Ivkoni vs. Arda
    Neftochimik 2010 vs. Dobrudzha 07

  • Bulgarian Superleague website is quite weird, but I found the result of the Supercup match (first edition, right?): Neftochimik 2010-Dobrudzha 07 3-1 (21-25, 25-15, 25-18, 25-23).

    "Voglio i tuoi occhi quando sognerai per farmi rimanere qui"
    "...come la terra la pioggia d'estate"
    "Io ti ho coperto le spalle, scoprendo tutto il mio cuore"
    - Emma :heart::love:

  • Bulgarian Superleague website is quite weird, but I found the result of the Supercup match (first edition, right?): Neftochimik 2010-Dobrudzha 07 3-1 (21-25, 25-15, 25-18, 25-23).

    Thanks for the update ;) I am still waiting for the stats sheet, I will post it once it becomes available. The best scorers are Valentin Bratoev with 25 points for the winners, whereas Dobrudzha's opposite Zhulien Georgiev finished with 21. No, it isn't the first edition, by the way. We've had it for a few years now. Last year we had the same teams fighting for it, then Dobrudzha had won the league, whereas Neftochimik participated as the Cup holder. The winner was the same back then, 3-2 for the Burgas side.

    I am curious about Neftochimik's current rotation. They play without a real opposite, as far as I know. Petar Hristov is the only full-time opposite, but he doesn't get much court time. I read Charapovich played as an opposite during the pre-season preparation, I wonder if it was the case for the Supercup, too. Originally, Neftochimik had made an agreement with Levan Kalandadze but the Russian is said to have failed at his medicals. Michael Chemos from Kenya, last year under contract in Finland, was an option this week but problems with his visa cancelled the whole operation. Neftochimik are still searching for an opposite. Honestly, I would play with Petar Hristov anyway, he can and should be used in the long run.

    Meanwhile, Marek sent Daudi Okello on loan at Galatasaray. Which means that the team will probably be weakened this season and will be forced to play with youngsters. We will see about that.

  • Thanks. There's no track about Bulgarian Supercup on Wikipedia, that's why I asked.

    Is there the women's Supercup too?

    "Voglio i tuoi occhi quando sognerai per farmi rimanere qui"
    "...come la terra la pioggia d'estate"
    "Io ti ho coperto le spalle, scoprendo tutto il mio cuore"
    - Emma :heart::love:

  • Charapovich used to play as OPP before, I think in last 2 years he is covering both OH and OPP position. Like Audochanka, his teammate from Belarus NT.

  • I finally found some free time to write a few lines about the situation in the league. I just can't post scores, stats, and rankings, I am sorry :(

    Currently placed 4th, Neftochimik are obviously one of the league's disappointments. The team is in a series of 4 consecutive defeats, including the two against Friedrichshafen in the Champions League. In the CL thread I mentioned part of the problems, there are more of those, however. And whereas the first two defeats in the league can easily be explained (1-3 away against Minyor - obvious underestimation, albeit quite unprofessional, just look at their starting line-up; 2-3 away against Levski - played on the next day after the arrival from the return leg in Germany - moronic schedule), the third one that happened over the last weekend is troublesome and flags deeper problems. Neftochimik lost at home against Marek's youngsters. Funny thing, these are the same youngsters and the same Marek that the now president of the volleyball club Neftochimik Vezenkov (former president of Lukoil's basketball club) mocked after the finals in spring. He claimed that it was no use having Marek in the CL, referring to their games in the groups a few years back, and even less sense to play with juniors. Well, those juniors took a sweet revenge over Vezenkov's star-studded Neftochimik. The Burgas side is still strong enough to win the league, regardless of the regular season position. But it is obvious they are not the team they though they could be. The presence of the Bratoev twins is also a known issue but let's not dive there now.

    Pirin have been a factor more or less for years, so their first position which they gained by beating Montana this past weekend is no surprise.

    Montana are enjoying the presence of the two promising Russians Kletc and Abaev, the latter allegedly a NT prospect, who arrived in Bulgaria thanks to their Bulgarian head coach in Novosibirsk Konstantinov. Both have been playing very well in the league. Actually, the rest of the Montana squad should step up, I expect Montana to play stronger towards the end of the regular season and the beginning of the play-offs.

    Hebar had claimed their ambitions to do damage in the league in their first season there and didn't disappoint.

    Dobrudzha 07, Levski, and CSKA are teams with problems this year. Dobrudzha lost some quality players over the past few seasons and are struggling for consistency. Levski should be a changed team with the return of the MB Teodor Bogdanov from France. He had a major role in the victory over Neftochimik. They still have some experience in the face of Mlyakov, Aleksandrov, and the libero Martin Ivanov, but the rest are inexperienced, including the head coach Vlado Nikolov. CSKA surely have one of the best rosters and youth academies in the league, so they should also finish in top 4 without problems. Their problems are actually short-term, they don't currently have healthy OHs. Ivaylo Stefanov, Yani Georgiev, and Plamen Shekerdzhiev are all unavailable mainly due to injuries, there is a chance for the veteran and ex-NT MB Hristo Tsvetanov to play as OH in the away game vs Marek today. CSKA's defeats happened in away games in Razlog, Dobrich (both 2-3) and Burgas, so nothing too dramatic, they should collect a lot of points in the long run.