Dhe last serve by Moritz Karlitzek went out and this mishap matched the whole appearance of the German national volleyball team in the EM quarter-finals against Italy. Nothing really worked out that Wednesday in Ostrava. The fact that national coach Andrea Giani’s team could lose 3-0 to the favored Italians had not been ruled out beforehand. The fact that it would be so steep was not expected: 13:25, 18:25 and 19:25 was the balance of the sentences. 0: 4 aces and 2:10 block points spoke just as clearly. In just 76 minutes, the vague hope of making it to the semi-finals and moving to the finals in Poland was over.
It seemed that after a few minutes the German players no longer believed in it. They were only able to balance the match up to 6: 6 in the first set. After that, the Italians took command and showed themselves to be the better team in all elements: more dangerous in serve, more compact in block, safer in acceptance, more targeted in attack build-up.
The German setter Jan Zimmermann had to go a long way to get the second ball at all because the assumption did not fit. The attack developed correspondingly little penetrative power. Georg Grozer, who had to give way to the young Linus Weber in the middle of the first movement in the diagonal position, was not a factor at all. Due to knee problems, the 36-year-old stayed outside and watched the game with a closed training jacket and a dark expression. Even if Weber was the second best German point collector after Karlitzek (eleven) with eight points, the German team lacked Grozer’s presence on the field. An exact diagnosis is still pending. “He definitely couldn’t continue playing, otherwise he would have bitten his teeth,” said Giani of the veteran who only made his comeback in the national team shortly before the European Championship.
His conclusion after the disappointing appearance in the quarter-finals was straightforward: “That was a bad game,” said Giani of the performance of his team, which also meant he lost the coaching duel against his former teammate Ferdinando De Giorgi. Both were world and European champions together. As a coach, De Giorgi and his team are one step ahead. “The
The Italian team has a high quality, “said Giani as a fair loser:” And we didn’t have the peace of mind to play the game properly. “