Here are the key matches from the opening D-1, Men’s Week 1②.

There is only one day left until the men’s competition starts. The anticipation among volleyball fans is growing.

The start of Week 1 of the FIVB Volleyball Nations League (VNL) Men’s Division 2023 is upon us. Week 1 will take place from 6-12 June (local time) in Ottawa, Canada and Nagoya, Japan. The Netherlands, Germany, USA, Brazil, Argentina, Italy, Canada and Cuba from Pool 1 will play in Ottawa, while Bulgaria, Serbia, Slovenia, Iran, Japan, China, Poland and France from Pool 2 will play in Nagoya.

To help fans decide which games to watch, The Spike will be highlighting some of the most noteworthy matches from the 32 total matches in Week 1 by date. Following the first part, which introduced the matches that will take place between the 6th and 8th, we have selected the matches that will take place between the 9th and 12th.먹튀검증

9 June: Argentina vs Brazil (9pm) – South America’s eternal rivals meet in North America
The two great nations of South America, Argentina (ranked 8th in the FIVB World Rankings) and Brazil (ranked 4th), are eternal rivals in the world of football. The same goes for volleyball. The two teams have always clashed fiercely, but Brazil has always had the better record, as evidenced by the fact that Brazil has won the Confederation of South American Volleyball (CSV) South American Championship 33 times, while Argentina has only won once (in 1964). In the VNL, Brazil won the title in 2021, while Argentina has never even reached the quarter-finals.

These two teams will face off in Week 1 of the VNL. The venue is Canada, in North America, not South America. While the objective power is in Brazil’s favour, the schedule favours Argentina. Argentina will play Italy on the 6th and then have two days off, while Brazil will face Germany on the 8th and then play straight through. With so many seniors in the squad, the physical demands could be even greater for Brazil.

10 June: Italy vs Cuba (5:30am) – Italy at 1.5, Cuba a chance?
Italy (2nd) are on a roll after winning the 2022 FIVB World Championship and will be strong favourites for the title. In particular, their young wing trio of Alessandro Micheletto-Daniele Lavia-Yuri Romano is as good as any team in the competition. However, two of them will be unavailable for Week 1. World Championship MVP Simone Giannelli and starting middle blocker Gianluca Galassi are also out for Week 1, as Miqueleto and Lavia have been removed from the roster.

For Cuba (ranked 12th), who entered the VNL stage after winning the 2022 FIVB Challenger Cup, this is a golden opportunity. If Italy were to field their best players, the odds would be stacked against them, but against a 1.5 team, Cuba is more than capable. Lucky to face Italy in Week 1, they will need to rely on Marlon Jant (Lille) and Jesús Herrera Jamie (Perugia), who know Italy well from their time in the Italian Superliga. They will also need to be more organised than last year.

11 June: Japan vs France (7.10pm) – Japan looking for revenge at home
Japan (7th) and France (3rd) met three times last year in the VNL and at the World Championships, all in favour of France. The French claimed shutout victories in the VNL Week 2 match and the quarter-finals, while the World Championship Round of 16 ended in a full-set thriller. It was a disappointing result for Japan. While it was true that they were inferior to France, one of the strongest teams in 2022, the gap was not enough to warrant a three-game sweep.

In this VNL, Japan will be looking for revenge. There are some things to smile about. The trio of Yuki Ishikawa, Ran Takahashi, and Yuji Nishida will be back in full force from Week 1. Also, the game will be played in Nagoya, Japan’s home city. The fact that they won’t have to deal with jet lag and will be able to rely on the enthusiastic support of their home fans is crucial. Will Japan be able to end their international losing streak against France in comfort at home?

12 June: Canada vs Germany (7am) – A clash of underdogs to close out Week 1
This is the final game of Week 1 on the men’s side. Both teams are underdogs who are not expected to do well in this tournament. At the last VNL, Germany finished 12th with four wins (10 points) and Canada finished 15th with two wins (6 points), failing to qualify for the final round. Their world rankings are also low, with Canada at 16th and Germany at 17th, behind China (25th) and Bulgaria (23rd).

However, both teams have a clear reason to win. They want to reach the final round for the first time in their history. Canada had three consecutive single-digit placings from 2018-2021, but slipped into double digits for the first time in 2022 (7-9-8-15th). Germany, on the other hand, failed to reach single digits in three consecutive competitions from 2019-2022 after finishing ninth in 2018 (14-13-12th). With both teams needing to finish in the top eight to reach the Final Round, and both teams needing to beat each other to reach single digits in the rankings, these are two teams that could be looking for a last-minute ride to the Final Round.


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