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29/01/2018 13:57
Noliko and TOULOUSE vie for home wins in attempt to reverse fortunes
2018 CEV Volleyball Champions League - Men

Luxembourg, January 29, 2018. Noliko MAASEIK and Spacer’s TOULOUSE VB will be trying to use the home court advantage on Tuesday night to make amends for their away losses to Zaksa KEDZIERZYN-KOZLE and BERLIN Recycling Volleys, respectively. These will be the fixtures opening the fourth round of action in the 2018 CEV Volleyball Champions League – Men as the race for a spot in the Playoffs of Europe’s elite club competition is heating up and fans can look forward to enjoying as many as 10 classy matches this week.

Spacer’s TOULOUSE VB (FRA) vs. BERLIN Recycling Volleys (GER)

•    The match will coincide with the CL debut of Belgian opposite hitter Bram Van de Dries, who spent the first half of the season in Korea.
•    Spacer’s TOULOUSE have had a difficult time lately – two weeks ago they lost their third straight match in Pool D to the BR Volleys, had a difficult journey back to France and dropped their last two matches in the national league as well to PARIS Volley and RENNES Volley 35, respectively.
•    Two weeks ago, the BR Volleys claimed a 3-0 home victory, but the second set was an incredibly close one (28-26). Apart from that, the Germans used their physical edge as Spacer’s TOULOUSE have been struggling with injuries and illnesses lately as well.
•    The hosts count on their supporters to deliver a great ambiance and claim their first ever victory in the group stage of the Champions League.

Stéphane Sapinart, head coach of Spacer’s TOULOUSE VB: “After our loss to RENNES Volley 35, we find ourselves in the kind of situation that we wanted to avoid at any costs. We sit in last place in the national league but knowing how many injuries we have been struggling with, I saw some good things on Saturday night – especially when it comes to our fighting spirit.”


•    This is already the 11th European matchup between Noliko MAASEIK and Zaksa KEDZIERZYN-KOZLE. The Polish champions lead the way with six wins and four losses.
•    The first matchup between Noliko and Zaksa dates back to January 27, 1999, which was exactly 19 years ago last Saturday.
•    In recent history, Zaksa proved to be the stronger team, winning on the last five occasions in the Champions League (i.e. in 2013, 2017 and 2018). What is more: in the last three games, Zaksa did not even lose a single set.
•    On each side, one single player figured on the roster of the 2013, 2017 and 2018 games: Jelte Maan for Noliko, and Lukasz Wisniewski for Zaksa.
•    Noliko is trying to grab a second victory in the group stage for the first time in the last four seasons. With one victory under their belt against Arkas IZMIR, MAASEIK already equalled the result of their last three participations in the Champions League.

Dane Mijatovic, player of Noliko MAASEIK: “I believe we can take one point away from Zaksa and even more. Two weeks ago in Poland, we were pretty close to them in sets one and two, only in the end they showed a couple of better plays. With our home advantage, we already beat Arkas IZMIR and I am sure Zaksa can expect an even better MAASEIK. We will certainly not give them an easy win.”

Sam Deroo, player of Zaksa KEDZIERZYN-KOZLE: “Saturday’s loss in the semi-finals of the Polish Cup has been a huge disappointment. We feel as if we have to prove ourselves again. I’m afraid Noliko may well become the victim of this state of mind.”

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