A 3 to 0 as in the first leg and WithU Verona is roaring again. Against Allianz Milano, the best version of the Verona team is seen again, which closes the Milanese practice in 90 minutes and earns the first three points of 2023. All three tenors of the gialloblù attack close in double figures, showing off a great overall performance value. Sapozhkov best scorer of the match with 16 balls placed on the ground, followed by Keita (15 and the satisfaction of having received the MVP award) and Mozic (13). Central players Cortesia and Grozdanov are also in great shape, capable of scoring 4 and 3 blocks respectively. Next weekend, Stoytchev’s boys will take the field once again in front of their fans against the Italian champions Lube Civitanova.


In the starting sextet, coach Stoytchev confirms Spirito in the control room with Sapozhkov completing the diagonal. In the bandwidth space for the usual tandem formed by Mozic and Keita, while the central players are Cortesia and Grozdanov; the libero is Gaggini. We start with Ishikawa’s service, but the first point is courtesy of the hosts. The guests respond, going ahead in scoring, but Verona first catches them back and then extends. Sapozhkov finds a big wall, which anticipates Keita’s ace for 6 to 3. The Russian replies under the net shortly after with another monster block that is 8-4. Vitelli closes the gap, but the Gialloblù are infallible when blocking, stopping their opponents with Courtesy and Spirit (12-7). Milan is back in the running thanks to Patry, who gives him a break. Then Keita is still exalted, author of two spectacular technical gestures (17-13). Recovery of the meneghini, who go to -1, but another wall of Courtesy restores the distances (20-17). Piazza’s team stays in the slipstream with Porro’s ace, then finding the draw (23-23). Keita crushes the opponent’s comeback and closes the first set on 25-23.


The second set opens with Verona ahead, but the visiting team overtakes, before a terrible one-two signed by Mozic and Keita (2-3). Loser replies with an ace, then Mergarejo lights up, who puts in three points, one of which is direct from nine meters. With Patry’s winning long line, Milan tries to escape (6-9). Sapozhkov plays well with his hands on the block, then Mozic takes advantage of an incorrect reception by his opponents, giving him new life (10-12). Allianz maintains a good margin of advantage, but the Scala players find continuity in the net and with two blocks by Grozdanov they hook the draw (18-18). The Gialloblù overtake after a great comeback (22-21). The match is exciting, with the two teams responding blow by blow. Keita unleashes his power from place 4 for 25-24, then Mozic sets the score at 27-25. Verona ahead 2 to 0.


At the start of the third set, the match settled on the tracks of balance, with some errors from nine meters on both sides. Mozic stamps the 5 to 4 with an elusive diagonal, then Stoytchev’s troop finds the break thanks to Grozdanov’s cunning touch (9-7). The Bulgarian centre-back also took the stage later, when he put down a great first half. Sapozhkov growls again in place 2 and Verona flies up 13-11. The hosts are precise both when blocking, with the usual Courtesy, and in attack, thanks to Mozic and Keita who pierce the opposing defence. The Slovenian increases his team’s advantage, which extends to 21-16. Milan tries to get back into the game with the ace stamped by Ebadipour, but Verona earns four match points, with Sapozhkov setting the result at 25-21. The three points go to Verona. Deputy Dario Simoni’s statements at the end of the match: “A great result, we needed it. We went through a difficult period, we certainly haven’t gotten out of it, but we have ample room for improvement and today’s test is proof of that. It was a victory of heart and character that we sought with all our might. The misstep in Taranto affected a lot psychologically, so we hope that this victory will allow us to improve in terms of experience. We mustn’t forget the past games to become even stronger with a stronger head”.

WithU Verona – Allianz Milano 3–0 (25-23; 27-25; 25-21)

Set duration: 28′; 33′; 29′; total: 1h 30′