Russia and Germany are the first European teams to book their tickets for the Final Round of the 2010 FIVB Men’s World Championships in Italy.
Russia defeated the hosts of Finland 3-0 and Germany beat Belgium with the same figures in Tampere Ice Hockey Arena for the last matches of Pool I. Russia finished first in the standings after having successfully walked through all their matches.
Home team of Finland still had some hopes to qualify for the World Championships, but Russia destroyed these hopes in a very determined way. The defending European silver medalists finished quickly the match in straight sets 25-23, 25-17, 25-22.
“I am so disappointed that it is difficult to find words. The situation was difficult for us. We had to believe in our chances to qualify, but it did not pay off on the court. We didn’t deserve the place in the World Championships. There were two better teams in this tournament”, says Finnish captain Tuomas Sammelvuo. Finnish coach Mauro Berruto was also very disappointed with the end of this tournament and blamed himself for the bad results of the Finnish team. “When a team is playing under its own level then it is the coach’s responsibility. Everything was perfect before the tournament, but we did not play well enough”, says Berruto. “When you play against one of the best teams in the world you must give 120 percent or they will kill you”, Berruto added about the match against Russia.
Russian coach Daniele Bagnoli took a couple of new players on the court against Finland, but that did not change their great game that much. “They played in a very good way. Serves were exceptionally good today. I am very happy that we got to our target in this tournament”, says Bagnoli.
Germans took their second win in the tournament very easily over Belgium in three sets (25-17, 25-19, 25-21). “We really concentrated on this match. We played four times against Belgium in the European League and we lost twice. We knew that Belgium works a lot and we knew that we had to play well to win this match. We are very happy with our own performance in this tournament”, says German head coach Raul Lozano. Captain Robert Kromm was also very satisfied. “I am very happy with our performance in this match. We had good attacks and aggressive blocks and defense. Belgium is not an easy opponent so we started very aggressively. Schöps was very good in this tournament and it helped us a lot”.