Buenos Aires, Argentina, February 15, 2014 - The Board of Administration of the Argentine Volleyball Federation (FeVA) today approved Julio Velasco’s appointment as coach of Argentina’s men’s national volleyball team until the end of the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
The top FeVA authorities voted unanimously to hire 62 year-old Velasco at Friday’s Executive Committee Meeting. “The country’s volleyball authorities support this project, which we believe will be very important for volleyball and Argentine sport. I have noticed our sport officials are excited to go on with a sport project headed by one of the most well-known coaches in the world, who will help us grow the sport and bring a lot of knowledge," said FeVA President, Juan Antonio Gutierrez.
Julio Velasco recently stepped down as coach of the Iran national volleyball team to lead the men’s team in his home country, Argentina. Velasco, who was appointed head coach of the Iran men's national team in 2011, will take up the top job in Argentina following a request from the country’s President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.
Under Velasco’s leadership the Iran team impressed in their World League debut last year. “We have shown we belong among the world’s best,” said Velasco referring to the team’s impressive record of five wins from 10 matches. Iran was one of the surprise packages of the 2013 World League defeating giants Italy, Cuba, Serbia, and Germany in the tournament and are currently No. 12 in the FIVB World Ranking.
The Argentine also took the Iran team to victory in 2011 when they won the Asian Volleyball Championship title on home soil and helped them secured World Championship qualification. Iran won Pool B of the Asian Men’s Final Qualification Tournament in September last year for their ticket to the FIVB Volleyball Men's World Championship Poland 2014, scheduled to take place from August 30 to September 21.
“Without the support of the Iran Volleyball Federation this project would have been impossible. They understand the importance of the project that Velasco will head in Argentina," added Gutierrez.
FeVa's Board of Administration also approved the appointment of Professor Osvaldo Celia as Manager of the team. Upon Velasco’s arrival in Argentina on Wednesday, the coach will hold meetings at FeVA's headquarters and an official press conference at 18:00 at a venue still to be confirmed.