Skip Navigation Links
24/10/2015 15:57
Volley ASSE-LENNIK is ambitious but holds off the pressure
2016 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League - Men

Asse, Belgium, October 24, 2015. The 2016 edition of the CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League – Men sees the return of the Belgian league’s runners-up Volley ASSE-LENNIK, who made an impressive European run last season by reaching the semi-finals of the CEV Volleyball Cup, only to be knocked out by the eventual winners of Dinamo MOSCOW. Head coach Johan Devoghel and team captain Frank Depestele, who returned to Belgium this summer after some successful European adventures, took some time to analyse the role Volley ASSE-LENNIK can play in their upcoming games against Tomis CONSTANTA, #Dragons LUGANO and Asseco Resovia RZESZOW.

Volley ASSE-LENNIK is back in the Champions League after an amazing season in the Belgian competitions last year, but what are the ambitions at the start of this campaign? Do you think your team is ready for these matches?
Johan Devoghel (coach): “Getting the right to play in the Champions League was the icing on the cake after our great performances from last season. I think it’s great that my players will be able to show themselves at the highest level, but it’s still too early to see where we stand. We have a pretty young team, so it will be interesting to see how they cope with these matches. We’ll start without any pressure.”
Frank Depestele (captain): “Although I’m new in this team, I think it’s great to play Champions League. All of our players will enjoy this. I hope that we will be able to get into the second round. I’m sure that this could be possible with this team, but it’s still early in the season so it’s not easy to make any predictions at this moment.”

You were drawn in the same group as Tomis CONSTANTA, #Dragons LUGANO and Asseco Resovia RZESZOW. What do you think of these teams?
Devoghel: “Asseco Resovia is the reigning Polish champion, so I think it’s safe to say that they will be the clear favourite to win this group. But CONSTANTA and LUGANO also already showed what they’re capable of during previous major European competitions, so I don’t think we’ll be facing any easy opponents in this stage of the tournament. Our main goal is to gain experience and to look at the current situation one match at a time.”
Depestele: “I agree, RZESZOW will be the toughest opponent in the group stage, but the other two teams are equally strong and balanced. Bringing our home games to a good result will be crucial if we want to advance to the next round.”

ASSE-LENNIK went through an amazing season last year, by finishing as runners-up in the national competition, winning the national cup and reaching the semi-finals of the CEV Cup. Do you want to do an even better job this season?

Depestele: “Reaching the second round of the Champions League would already be fantastic, and from there on we’ll see. I think our main goal in the national competitions should be to aim for the prizes.”
Devoghel: “It would be an amazing achievement if we managed to match the performance we pulled off last season. Although, we did transfer seven new players to our team, so we’re still searching a bit to let all the pieces of the puzzle fit. Lucky for us, our new setter and team captain here by my side is very experienced, so that will ease up the adjustments we have to go through. On a national level, I think that most teams are stronger than last season. Knack ROESELARE and Noliko MAASEIK will again be the biggest favourites for the championship title, but the other teams are not to be underestimated too. We had a tough pre-season because of some injuries and the European Championship, but we are optimistic and we’ll see where we stand.”

Frank, you returned to your home base Lennik after successful years playing for teams such as Belogorie BELGOROD, Fenerbahce ISTANBUL and BEAUVAIS Oise. What are your ambitions now, as a 38-year old setter with loads of experience?

Depestele: “I still want to play at a high level with ASSE-LENNIK, and I’m ambitious enough to say that I want to conquer titles and prizes with this team. I want to start that by bringing the upcoming season to a good end.”

News nr. 9513 of 23547
24/10/2015 17:13:00
Gold medal for new Czech team Slukova and Hermannova in Antalya
24/10/2015 10:55:00
Last year’s gold medallists Eczacibasi VitrA open season in Europe’s elite league
Advanced Search
Open the calendar popup.
Open the calendar popup.
Search for:

Title and navigation
Title and navigation
<<<July 2022><<
July 2022