Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 26 March, 2015 – Brazil women’s team coach Jose Roberto ‘Ze Roberto’ Guimaraes expects a huge legacy for volleyball following the Rio de Janeiro 2016 Olympic Games.
Volleyball is set to be one of the most sought-after sports at the Games, with tickets to the competition at the Maracanazinho Arena the most popular in the most recent round of ticket sales.
While much of the attention as the clock counts down to the start of Rio 2016 has been on the new sports arenas that will be built in Rio, Ze Roberto expects there to be a new enthusiasm for sport across the country, notably for volleyball.
If anyone knows what the Olympic Games mean, it is Ze Roberto. He led the men’s team to gold at the Barcelona 1992 Olympics and then coached the women’s team to back-to-back gold at Beijing 2008 and London 2012.
However, despite Brazil’s fine record at the Games, he realises that home advantage offers no guarantees of further success.
With many of their star players featuring for clubs outside Brazil the fear is that many of them will suffer from burnout, while those playing in Brazil’s Superliga are facing higher and higher standards of competition.
“Past success does not guarantee future success or success at Rio 2016,” Ze Roberto said. “Some players are in their 30’s and they have to ensure that their physical attributes matches their technical expertise and experience.”