At the beginning of the season Calzedonia Verona made a few surprises. About this, new goals and about the games against Lube told Andrea Giani.
In the whole match you made a lot of your own mistakes. Can we say that they decided about your defeat?
Andrea Giani: – Absolutely. When it comes to our technique, we played very badly. When you play against Lube Macerata and you want to fight equivalently, you have to play at such a level that we have presented in Thursday’s game. You have to play technically, wisely, to respect the ball. Against Lube we should play point for point. That day, in the first set until the tenth point, with the seven receptions in the point we couldn’t get a break. We put two attacks in the net, two in the out, we put four balls for free – it’s too much and playing against the team like Lube, you cann’t afford something like that. Especially since this team won’t give you a gift, won’t give you the free points. In this rivalry we sould play very effectively and we didn’t do that. We also had no aggressive service… In the second set we were able to play point for point only ath the beggining, but with time we lost six-seven points in a row which was crucial for the result. About the third set we would like to forget as soon as possible. I’m sorry that this is how it worked out, but with such a game, which we presented in a match against such opponent as Lube, the result couldn’t be different.
How important in this case was the psychological aspect of a painful defeat 2:3 on Thursday?
– These types of issues has a great importance. In this case, however, much more important was our technique, our skills. This is the play-offs and here every game has its own story, here you don’t think about the past. We didn’t start good this game and then we couldn’t change it and everyone is responsible for this. I’m sorry that in front of our audience, in our own hall, after the Tursday’s game, we didn’t repeat aour performance, that we didn’t fight, disappointing fans.
What has exactly happened on Thursday? You had a great chance to win 3:1 against Lube.
– We didn’t win because when it was 24:22 we couldn’t put the ball our opponent’s court. We made an error in the attack, it was 24:23, then it was 25 and we made an error in service… We took away a chance by ourselves, we made errors instead of letting Lube go wrong. In the tie-break we didn’t play our game and lost deservedly 9:15.
Can we still say that with the advancing to the playoffs you have achieved your goal?
– Yes. Certainly the fact that we are in the top eight of the season can be considered a success and I can tell you that our goal has been reached. However, I believe that the team, to develop, has to put in front of it higher goals. We reached a place where we wanted to find, but we didn’t completely confirm our potential, we didn’t fully prove that we are able to do all this, what we could do.
However, you still have a chance to win the fifth place giving a possibility to play in European cups.
– It’s true and I’d love that we have succeed. Play-off for fifth place it’s also a game on a completely different level – at this stage there is longer such strong team like Lube Macerata. Now, to finish the season at the fifth plasce is our new goal. We want to win this part of the competition and we will do everything in our power to do so. But first we have to get used to this idea, all of us must get it what we are fighting for and then only we will have to implement it and play as best as we can.
Your first opponent will be CMC Ravenna. How do you assess this team?
– CMC is a good team which in the round rematch started to play better and better. If we want to beat it, we will have to play well technically, we will have to play at 100%. The most important is how we actually start this game and that all of us equally strongly care about the victory.
At the beginning of the season you made a few surprises. What was missing to continue this path?
– We are a team in which in December from the squad dropped one wing-spiker. Another, his substitute, not so high player is inexperienced. In addition, Ter Horst in January disn’t play so good according to his abilities. Then, for about two months, we trained only with two wing-spikers. Therefore, it became necessary that we contracted a new player. The search took us some time but we managed to sign a contract with Kovačević. It is obvious that in such conditions it is difficult to develop and improve your skills. This is the reason why in round rematch we haven’t coped so well.
As for you, after a year break you returned to coaching the club. How much has helped you the experience gained next to Berruto?
– It’s a long story. It’s all about the schedule, the system of training, preparation for matches, about how to teach, to motivate the players. It’s a completely different story. I learned many new things, mechanisms of action, I developed myself. Now I transfer this experience to work in Calzedonia.
And how would you assess the cooperation with Halkbank Ankara and Radostin Stoychev?
– Our teams trained together for ten days and it certainly was for us a very important and valuable time. Then in our team left of only six players, we missed those who had to play in the national teams in qualifications for the World Championships. Thanks to cooperation with Halkbank we could take normal training which at that time was quite important. Also for my players work with such players was an opportunity to learn new things, to raise their level and acquire some experience.
There have been rumors that Stoychev next year will replace you as Calzedonia’s coach. Such information doesn’t interfere on your work?
– (Laughs) I don’t pay attention on it. That would be something good for Calzedonia if they could get a coach with such experience and successes. It really would be great if in Verona managed to create a great team with a big budget.