The Bulgarian Volleyball Federation has parted way with its men’s volleyball team head coach Plamen Konstantinov. His contract expired at the end of the World Championships last month, and after meetings between he and the federation president Dancho Lazarov, the split was announced. Konstantinov had been the head coach of the team since 2014
The team finished just 11th at the World Championships that they co-hosted with Italy. That’s a slight improvement over their 13th-place finish in 2014, but continues a trend in the wrong direction since they took a bronze medal at the 2006 World Championships.
Bulgaria Men’s National Team Finishes – Last 10 FIVB World Championships
- 1982 – 5th
- 1986 – BRONZE
- 1990 – 5th
- 1994 – 9th
- 1998 – 7th
- 2002 – 13th
- 2006 – BRONZE
- 2010 – 7th
- 2014 – 13th
- 2018 – 11th
The finish was as much a result of who wasn’t at the World Championships as it was the performance of the players who were, however. After a conflict between Konstantinov and the team’s usual libero Wladislaw Iwanow, the latter was left off the World Championship roster. Starting setter Georgi Bratoev also missed the World Championships after suffering an ankle injury in the Nations League tournament, Todor Skirmov battled injuries throughout the summer including one to his calf in the tournament. Tsvetan Sokolov also missed the tournament after having surgery on his patellar tendon in June.
Konstantinov remains the head coach of Lokomotiv Novosibirsk in the Russian Super League, where he has been since 2016. The team were the 2013 champions of Europe, finished 3rd in the Russian Championship in 2017, but fell to 6th in 2018. The team has won all 3 of its matches so far in the 2018-2019 Russian championship, although 2 of those 3 wins have been against teams near the bottom of the table.