Looking at the results, Chieri has significantly dropped its form recently. However, if they push through this second match in France, they should win this cup. I'm worried about Omoryui's poor and inconsistent play.
I have the feel these are issues that won't be there with a different coaching staff. We're talking about the same team that took a convincing victory in Istanbul against VakıfBank. As much as the defending Champions League title holder aren't as deadly as the past, it's still a team that can do damages (and tomorrow I can sense we'll see a proof of that): that means you need some sort of quality in order to sweep them on the road and Milano certainly proved that. I'm not denying Orro's erratic perfomances or the unstable showing of the OH unit, I'm just putting a lot of emphasis on Gaspari's hectic management because I do believe that the huge difference between these two teams is the mentality (Gennari's subs is a great example).
Congeliano has a mentality similar to Foppapedretti Bergamo from a dozen years ago or, for example, Sisley Treviso in men's competitions at the beginning of the 21st century. The difference is that in those clubs the majority of the squad were Italian players who largely identified with these clubs, e.g. Piccinini. On the other hand, Bergamo had a great opponent in the Despar Perugia team, while currently Congeliano is winning practically all in Italy in last years. There are strong opponents on paper but they always fail in decisive matches.
Bonifacio is the best middler blocker in Novara in the next match - again she is much better than Danesi. At the moment she is a certain candidate to play in the national team in the VNL and perhaps in the Olympic Games with Fahr and Lubian. Unfortunately, Danesi's performance is getting worse with each passing season. This looks like another wasted Italian potential
And I'm worried that an elderly Serbian star in Le Cannet and an American in Chieri play the main roles and the hope of Italian volleyball - Omoruyi leaves court in the decisive set because she is unable to help her team. This is very sad
According to statistics Sylla had a good percentage in attack but made as many as 5 direct errors in reception. Unfortunately, Italians aren`t able to train 2 stable receivers with a good attack, e.g. del Core, Piccinini. They have a million great coaches, a lot of junior medals, and they must to play in the national team with Sylla, who 10-15 years ago haven`t even made the first 12 in the Italian national team. Even Valentina Fiorin was more stable in her reception...
In Germany the most popular women sport is probably football and there is a very strong league with the world's top players. There are also a strong league in handball. It seems to me that women's volleyball is outside the top 3 popular sports in Germany and in Italy, for example, it`s in first place (football is surprisingly much less popular than its men's version).
In the knockout phase matches, only Busto was eliminated against Stuttgart in the Cev Cup two years ago. Perhaps there were some single defeats in the Champions League group matches. German clubs don`t have high budgets to bring in stars or don`t they have a large pool of players of their own. I am also surprised that such a rich country invests so little money in club sports and, for example, is unable to beat the offer from Turkey or Poland. The same thing happens, for example, in football, where only Bayern is competitive and the rest of the clubs have to sell their best players to England.
Maybe they feel so confident that they think they will win anyway. It's working for now because in most matches they start playing better at the end and they win. Let's be honest, clubs from Germany, France and Greece aren`t serious opponents. Only clubs from Turkey (those from the middle of the table) and possibly Poland have single stars in their rosters, e.g. Chemik.
Novara with a serious approach shouldn`t lose a set single in this cup. I can see that they play with minimal commitment. However, what I have observed recently is that Bonifacio is performing better than Danesi and Chirichella also in the league. I wonder if Bonifacio will be called up to the VNL national team?
No idea why Gironi is playing instead of Romano, but with Recine + Gironi Milano is having a great time.
Romano played in the first two sets and scored 1 point of 10 attacks... Gironi played much better than him, scoring 18 points with 55% effectiveness. In any case, neither one nor the other isn`t material for an first attacker in the national team that dreams of Olympic gold... De Giorgi should consider appointing Rychlicki who is more stable, or wait for Bovolenta's development - more in the context of 2028.
Especially the seasons: 2004/2005 and 2005/2006, there was total domination of Italian clubs (in 2005 there was final: Bergamo-Novara). In those seasons they won 6/6 European Cups: Champions League, Cev Cup and Top Teams Cup. Earlier, at the beginning of the 21st century Uralochka and Cannes were able to fight but not only them. Champions League in 2004 won Marichal Tenerife in the final against Perugia (Swieniewicz was injured during the match and Chiara di Julio was unable to replace her). Then until 2010 Italians regulary won European Cups (mainly with clubs from Russia: Dinamo, Odintsovo etc) but clubs from Turkey had larger budgets - this trend started by Fenerbahce in 2008. Champions League final in 2010: Bergamo-Fenerbahce 3-2 it was the last victory of the Italian club in the Champions League for many years. Even then the Turks had a much higher budget.
Btw, Who today remember such names as: Cermagica Reggio Emilia, Medinex Reggio Calabria? Foppapedretti Bergamo stayed at the top the longest time: from the mid-1990s until 2010 (the last win in the Champions League). Teodora Ravenna dominated earlier but I wasn't interested in sports at that time - I was too young.
There were seasons with 6 (Bergamo, Perugia, Pesaro, Jesi, Chieri and Novara) teams out of 12 fighting for the scudetto on paper...
Also during the four season before Beijing 2008, about 70% of the olimpic medalists - if you don't count China, which forbidden its players to go abroad while playing for the NT - played in Italy for a while:
Gold medalist Brazil
José Roberto Guimarães -> Pesaro (2006-2009)
Walewska de Oliveira -> Perugia (2004-2007)
Marianne Steinbrecher -> Pesaro (2006-2008)
Hélia de Souza -> Perugia (2004-2007)
Valeska Menezes -> Novara (2007-2008)
Jaqueline de Carvalho -> Jesi (2006-2007) and came back after the OGs (Pesaro 2008-2009)
Sheilla de Castro -> Pesaro (2004-2008)
Silver Medalist USA
Lang Ping -> Modena (1998-2002), Novara (2002-2004), Jesi (2004-2005)
Ogonna Nnamani -> Piacenza (2005-2006), Novara (2007-2008)
Danielle Scott -> Chieri (2003-2006)
Lindsey Berg -> Pesaro (2004-2007), Novara (2007-2008) and came back after a season missed because of a injury (Villa Cortese 2009-2012)
Stacy Sykora -> Ravenna (2000-2003), Modena (2003-2004), Altamura (2007-2008)
Heather Bown -> Ravenna (2000-2002), Bergamo (2002-2003), Modena (2003-2004), Tortolì (2004-2005), Jesi (2006-2010)
Jennifer Joines -> Chieri (2006-2007)
Kimberly Glass -> Santeramo (2005-2006)
Kim Willoughby -> Santeramo (2006-2007), Chieri (2007-2008) and came back after the OGs Perugia (2008-2009)
Logan Tom -> Jesi (2003-2004), Chieri (2004-2005)
And many of them left Italy right before the 2007-08 season, in order to have a easier club season before the OGs and limitate the risk of injuries. And most of the star players of the other teams were in Italy (Miyuki Takahashi alias Shin, Sokolova and Godina, Skowronska, Glinka, Rosner)...
The level of Serie A1 was insane. They were playing with the back ups in Europe till the final phase of most of the competitions (and swept the opponents 3-0; go now to Germany or Poland with the back ups, you would be crashed) and the italian teams eliminated each others because CEV forbidden the all-italian finals (from 2005 IIRC) with that stupid rule of having finalists from different countries.
Coming back to nowadays, Imoco (money, chemistry and tradition) looks clearly the favourite to me compared to the Vero Volley team (just money) and Scandicci (just money). It seems another regular season, like last ones.
Even if there continues to be no official announcement (we will have to wait at least until the end of the men's Olympic qualifying tournament), the president of FIPAV fires Mazzanti live on SkySport ...
“We must admit that this year has been quite disappointing – begins Manfredi – now we have to find a way to get everything back on track as soon as possible.”
“Velasco is only one of the 5-6 hypotheses we are examining. Unfortunately it was impossible to change immediately after the European Championship, even if we wanted to, because there wasn't the necessary time, as we would only be back on the field after 4 days."
With the change of direction, even numerous of the players absent during the works could regain their space within the blue squad (Egonu, De Gennaro and Bosetti above all).
“This will only be up to the new coach to decide – concludes the President -. What matters most is that the girls regain their shape as soon as possible, recovering from past problems. It will be important to have a championship with a little more serenity."
Even who the other names are besides Velasco is not known: on some Italian sites, the names Bernardinho, Bernardi, Gaspari and Bonitta are mentioned...
Bonitta? Is this some joke? Can you give a source?
It`s confirmed that Velasco is one of the possible 5/6 candidates. I wonder who else they're considering? I think that they are only Italians...
"Millitary accademy Bonitta"- Karpol could have done something like this in the 1980s in USSR or early 1990s in Russia. In Italy such working methods will never be accepted, especially in the age of the Internet etc. You need someone calm but at the same time with authority: I believe that Barbolini and Velasco have these qualities. Barbolini was able to shout at Pietrini during an Italian league match when he felt it was the right thing to do. Ze Roberto could also make Jaqueline cry sometimes during one of the breaks during the match and no one considered him a tyrannical despot.
Thank you Mazzanti.
Whoever knows a little bit of the s*it inside this team is by your side. You might not be the best coach out there, but you did something more valuable as an educator. Arrogance and bad attitude won once more, but you won for me. Some of these girls are so lost that even the 2006 "military accademy Bonitta" won't be any help for this team.
Time to move the dust under the carpet.
So who would you suggest to replace the coach? Mazzanti certainly had a successful in first period of work with the national team: 2017-2019 + the turn of 2021/2022 with victories Euro and VNL. Then something went wrong. An intelligent and wise coach would resign after the 2022 World Cup. Personally, I`m optimistic, because after the chaos with Bonitta, Barbolini took over the team in such a great way from 2007 that these were the best years in the history of the Italian women's NT. I hope it will be the same now. Btw., 15 years ago Italian volleyball players were also difficult and it was difficult to lead them.
Here is an interesting article regarding the possible arrival of Velasco: https://www.oasport.it/2023/09…re-litalia-dalle-macerie/
I think this is partially true but Italia, as opposed to other countries, has consistently been on top of the junior competitions since 2015 and yet, there are only very few players at a world class level from those pools to feed the senior NT. And when that happens is because there is something fundamentally wrong in the way the development of those players is being treated. In my opinion, it's in part due to the lack of opportunities. With chances given to those players, the Lega level would drop a bit but not much and in return you get a much stronger ger NT. That's what worked for the Brazialian NT that dominated the junior competitions in the 2000s and went onto to become the best team in world for almost a decade. Jaque, Fabiana, Thaisa, Natalia, Gabi, Fe, etc. were part of those junior teams.
For me this situation is simple: actually Italian clubs have no chance of financially beating the best Turkish clubs and winning titles in the Champions League. Therefore, even a slight lowering of the level will not change much: maybe at the beginning it will be more difficult to win against clubs from Poland or Germany but in the long time it will be good both the national team and the Italian league.