Bulgaria and Germany have met twice in the previous five European Olympic Qualifying Tournaments (since 2000). Germany won on both occasions.
Since the reunification of Germany, these teams have met on 15 occasions in major world level tournaments. Bulgaria have the edge with nine wins to six.
The most recent world level meeting between Bulgaria and Germany came during the league round of the 2019 Volleyball Nations League. Bulgaria won in five sets on 23 June 2019.
Germany beat Bulgaria 3-1 in the final of the 2015 European Games in Baku (pictured).
Bulgaria took seven points out of their three wins in the group phase – 3-0 win over the Netherlands and 3-2 victories over France and Serbia.
Bulgaria chase their ninth Olympic Games berth, and their first since 2012, when they finished fourth.
Tsvetan Sokolov (56) was the third most prolific scorer in the group phase of CEV Tokyo Volleyball European Qualification 2020, and the most prolific among players of teams that made the semi-finals.
Viktor Yosifov combined for nine stuff blocks in three group phase matches, only Czech Republic's Adam Zajicek had more (10). Yosifov also has 10 aces, a group phase-high alongside Germany's György Grozer.
Germany advanced to the semi-finals as runners-up in Pool A, behind Slovenia. They beat Czech Republic and Belgium 3-0, before falling in five sets to the Slovenians.
Germany finished second behind Italy the European Olympic Qualifying Tournament in 2012. They eventually qualified for London 2012, their last presence at Olympic level to date (5th place).
György Grozer ended up as Germany's top scorer in the group phase – 43 total points. He compiled those points in only two matches. His point-per-set average of 7.17 is highest among all players in the group phase.
Despite appearing in only two matches in the group phase, Grozer has the highest ace-per-set average of all players – 1.67 (10 aces in 6 sets played).
Lukas Kampa is by far the most efficient setter of the CEV Tokyo Volleyball European Qualification 2020 – 61.29%. Next up is Serbia's Nikola Jovovic on 47.17%.
First RefereeErdal AKINCITURSecond RefereeSusana Maria RODRIGUEZ JATIVAESP
Volleyball fans have ‘nicknamed’ the iconic Max-Schmeling-Halle ‘Germany’s Volleyball temple’. Actually, it is much more than just that – since this venue has played host to an impressive number of major international competitions as well, such as the 2002 FIVB Women’s World Championship, 2003 EuroVolley Men, 2013 EuroVolley Women, as well as the historic CEV Champions League Volley 2019 Super Finals back in May – to name only a few highlights. The Hall also plays as hosts to the Berlin Recycling Volleys, Germany's most decorated volleyball club with 10 Bundesliga titles and a CEV cup title in 2015/2016. The arena is located at Am Falkpl. 1, 10437 Berlin, Germany and holds up to 12,000 spectators.
- How To Attend
All matches are available LIVE on: www.eurovolley.tv
However, please be aware that the stream may be blocked in your country by a third-party service.
Following the conclusion of the match, a short recap video will be made available on the platform.Find your Broadcaster
- Who Qualifies?
After completion of a single round robin in each of the two pools, the top two teams will play crossed semi-finals. This is followed by a winner-takes-it-all final, where a much-coveted ticket to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be at stake.More
- Who Qualifies?
Assistant Coach 2
Assistant Coach 2
National anthem of Bulgaria
Andrea GIANI and Silvano PRANDI
Gyorgy GROZER enters the pitc
Georgi SEGANOV sets
Team Germany during a time-out
German fans at the Max-Schmeling-Halle
Andrea GIANI celebrates
Team Germany after the match
Team Germany after the match
Germany on to big match for Tokyo ticket!
Germany will face France in Friday’s crucial match that will send its winner to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. In the second semifinal of the European qualification tournament in Berlin, the Germans capitalised on the great support of the home crowd to put a stop on Bulgaria’s winning streak with a 3-1 (25-20, 25-23, 20-25, 25-23) defeat.
Ruling at the net, in both attacking and blocking, Germany prevailed throughout the first set. Denys Kaliberda was the man of the set delivering three spikes and three stuffs towards the win, which setter Lukas Kampa fixed at 25-20, surprising the Bulgarians with a hit on second touch for the last point.
As the second set started unfolding in favour of the Germans leading to a gap as wide as seven points, Bulgaria’s coach Silvano Prandi made some changes to his line-up and the team almost caught up in the money time. Andrea Giani’s boys, however, held up and Tobias Krick hit through the middle for the 25-23 win that gave the Germans a two-set lead in the match.
The third set was very competitive through 18-18, but then Bulgaria scored four times in a row to run off with a 22-18 lead and never looked back. Tsvetan Sokolov found a clever way to finish the set with an elegant off-the-block hit for 25-20.
The fierce battle continued throughout the fourth set as well. What made the big difference were Krick’s fantastic blocks and the prolific spiking of Christian Fromm. But when it mattered the most, at the back end of a double German match point, it was Gyorgy Grozer who took the responsibility to spike the winner and close it off at 25-23. Grozer was his team’s best scorer of the match with 17 points to his name, one short of Bulgaria’s Sokolov.
The match in numbers
The combined total number of points scored by both teams throughout the entire match.
The total length of the match, from the first serve through until the last point has ended.
Total number of people in attendance at the venue – taken at the end of the second set.
The combined total number of successful spikes achieved by both teams throughout the entire match.
An average of the two team service reception percentages from the complete match.
The number of successful point winning blocks of BULGARIA compared to GERMANY.
BULGARIA number of service aces compared to GERMANY
Errors leading to points of BULGARIA, next to those from GERMANY
Andrea Giani, Coach of Germany: “We are very very happy, because the match was so difficult with the Bulgarians. But I think, what I like so much was the focus with all the guys, because to could win this kind of match we need all the players. And every guy that entered changed it, one point or two points. And I love this, because the team played as a squad. And the focus is the same for all guys. The big players for example, with Georg and the younger, they have the same focus. I love this.”
Lukas Kampa, Captain of Germany about match: “I am very very happy about the start today. The way we shaped the first two sets, that we worked for this lead, because I believe that was very very important. In the game you could feel that, when the Bulgarians were close, it was extremely difficult to shake them off, because they just always have people that can start runs through services. That’s why, when we had bagged the second set, you could feel that, okay, now it’s a bit easier to play, although it wasn’t easy of course! Then we lost the third set, but that’s a different starting position and we worked hard for it. That’s probably what made me the happiest today.”