Successor of Laurent Tillie at the head of the France team, Bernardinho is aware that the task promises to be difficult as the Blues come out of an Olympic title in Tokyo. But the Brazilian technician is ambitious for the European Championship.
The Blues will not have time to digest. Barely out of the Olympic Games from which they won the gold medal, the players of the French men’s volleyball team will turn to the European championship, which starts on September 1st. But, for the first time since 2012, Laurent Tillie will not be there to guide them. Indeed, it is with the legend Bernardinho that the load of national coach returns. Recently questioned by the daily The team, the Brazilian technician assured having announced “from the start that the final would oppose France and Brazil” in Tokyo, where he worked as a consultant on television. Highlighting the fact that “France was third without any real preparation” during the League of Nations but also stressing that “ the players never gave up even when they were two or three points behind », Bernardinho justified this statement. Two-time Olympic champion at the head of Brazil, the new boss of the Blues does not hide his ambition for the next three years. ” History is before us now as only two teams have managed to retain their Olympic title : the Soviet Union in 1964 and 1968 and the United States in 1984 and 1988, he recalls. This is our challenge. “
Bernardinho: “Staying at the top will be much more difficult”
When asked about the pressure inherent in defending the Olympic title won in Tokyo, Bernardinho drew a parallel with his work at the helm of Brazil after the Sydney Olympics in 2000. ” Whatever the conditions, we must give the best. It doesn’t matter whether they’ve won or lost, says the Brazilian technician. When I take over Brazil in 2001, the team has just finished sixth at the Sydney Games. For me it is the same. “However, the first thing that the new coach of the Blues intends to do is” talk to the players “and” tell them how much to stay on top will be much harder “. “We do not win the silver medal, asserts Bernardinho. In Brazil, each time, it has been said that we have lost the gold. As for his decision to take charge of the Blues, the Brazilian technician puts forward the emotional side. ” I like volleyball played by France first, which is quite similar to the Brazilian game, he assures. But above all because my life is on the floor. I have done a lot of things in my career but this is where my heart beats. I like to develop, to build. “While his first experience at the head of the Blues will come quickly, Bernardinho admits that it “will not be easy to return to the fight because the players are tired, mentally and physically”. However, the objective is very clear: “ We must aim for the next gold medal right away “. The tone is set !