Interview by Farrokh Hesabi

Foolad Sirjan coach Rezaei reveals how difficult it was to win Asian title

October 24, 2021 - 17:24

TEHRAN - Sirjan Foolad head coach, Saeid Rezaei, who led his team to title at the 2021 Asian Men's Club Volleyball Championship, explained the struggling condition he experienced when he was appointed as Foolad coach.

The Sirjan based team won the Iranian Volleyball Super League last season. However, at the end of the season, the team went under massive changes when the ex-head coach (Reza Tondravan) and some key stars such as Rahman Davoudi, Saber Kazemi, and Alireza Behboudi left the team.

So, Rezaei took over an already crisis-stricken team and led them to the continental glory.

“The Asian Men's Club Volleyball Championship has been held for many years without the participation of the East Asian representatives such as Korea, Japan, and China's clubs. However, some of the teams have strong squads due to their world-class foreign players,” said Rezae in his interview with Tehran Times.

“We had a bad condition when I started coaching of the team. In fact, I had to build an entirely new team comparing the one that had won the league title last season. Moreover, we had to use the players such as Behnam Tashakori and Saber Kazemi in Asian Club Championship since they still were under contract with Foolad, but we no longer have them for the next season.

“My ultimate goal was to achieve success and to reach a peak in my journey with the team. Fortunately, we could handle the situation with players' efforts and the club managers' support,” added the head coach of Sirjan Foolad.

Foolad Sirjan will represent Asia at the 2021 FIVB Volleyball Men's Club World Championship. However, Rezaei confirms that the club must consider the condition to decide about participating in the Club World Championship.

“The world championship consists of the best teams with best players from all over the world. We will consult with the club managers to make the best decision about participating in this tournament.

“The main issue is that we have lost key players, and there is no time to sign new players because the transfer window is over. To strengthen the team by signing new players, we have to wait till the mid-season transfer window,” concluded Rezaei.