Thanks mosi for the additional context; that's very helpful for understanding the situation hidden from the limelight.
I wouldn't believe the promise from the authority about focusing on the growth of the new generation and not to worry about the results. The Iranian team has already established themselves as a real force at the international level when Kolakovic came. Even though Iran is not strong enough to be a serious medal contender at world tournaments, unless volleyball is pretty much neglected within the country which is not the case, there's no reason they don't want to maintain the team's standard in the near term. The situation is different from 10 years ago when Velasco was invited to coach the NT. Back then, Iran was gradually progressing but still unknown at the international level. Also, based on what happened to Slobodan Kovac, Kolakovic shouldn't take such a promise seriously. Kovac did bring good achievement in 2014 in his debut year at the Iranian NT, getting the fourth-place finish at WL and going to the final round at WCh. Even though the same result was not replicated the next year, Kovac shouldn't be fired so soon. After all, he didn't get the respect from the arrogant players.
It's such a shame that the volleyball federation changed their mind suddenly and forced him to use the full squad for the Asian Games. That completely disrupted what's originally planned for such a long and important WCh tournament. No wonder they were so out of shape at WCh, after a decent performance that summer.
Anyhow, although I'm not a fan of Kolakovic with his coaching achievement, he seemed to bring Iran on the right track. The team has been aging during the Rio Olympic cycle. The team is now a good mix of young and experienced players, and the depth has improved. Such credit should really go to Kolakovic.
well unfortunately mismanagement is a common thing in Iran. (obviously not only in sports) they get hot and cold about things. once they use exactly the same team for so many years and then all of a sudden they decide to change the whole team ! both are stupid. because changes should happen slowly and all the time.
and you are right that coaches should not believe such promises . when Zoran Gajic came to Iran in 2007 they told him the same, he completely changed the team, if I'm not wrong he invited only 2 players from 2006 WCH squad and instead tried to invite new players like young Marouf and Mousavi. at the time Iran was 3rd/4th team in Asia but then with all those changes Iran had to battle Thailand and Indonesia for 6th/7th place ! and they fired him !
after the Rio Olympics the general idea was this group of players can't achieve more and if Iran wants to go one level higher we need some revolutionary changes !! turned out to be a terrible idea. yes it's easy to improve when you are weak, but when you reach certain level, improving from there is really hard and won't happen overnight.
and you are exactly right about Slobodan Kovac, replacing him was a mistake (another reason why they don't replace Kolakovic now and few months before the Olympics) but the same group of "experts" said exactly the same thing about him and somehow lowered his position in eyes of the players. and then when Kovac won the Euro with Serbia they were like "see, Kovac is doing great but we have this shit guy" and it's more like whoever is NOT coaching Iran is better than our current coach. they were even criticizing Velasco when he had the job. they consider him a great coach now because he is gone.
and it's kind of amazing Kolakovic still has the respect of his players after all this. or maybe these players are also getting matured !?