Who is the best country in the world when it comes to volleyball? Today, we’re going to take a look at the best men’s national volleyball teams in 2020. This ranking is made according to the FIVB ranking, team awards in the last big tournaments and the actual form of the teams.
So, what are the best volleyball national teams?
Key Players: Wallace, Lucarelli
Overall gold medals: 65
Brazilian National Team is a volleyball legend. As far as I remember, they have always had amazing players in every position. That’s why they were taking part in every Olympic Games and won it 3 times. They also have 3 gold medals in the World Championship and the World Cup. They show their domination in the South American Championship. Since 1951 they have won every Championship, except for one in 1964 in Buenos Aires. Brazil also is the best national team in the World League, having won 9 gold medals. But now let’s focus on the latest events. In 2018 Brazil played in the final of the World Championship, losing 0:3 with Poland. In 2019 Canarinhos won the South American Championship and the World Cup, which gave them lots of points to the ranking making them the best national team right now. Brazil right now has fantastic players like Lucarelli or Lucas that are among the best players in the world. You can see the full list of the best volleyball players here. Brazil is the first FIVB volleyball team since 2005! What a series.
Key players: Wilfredo Leon, Bartosz Kurek
Overall gold medals: 6
Poland compared to Brazil isn’t that titled historically. But in the last time, the Polish team has made huge progress and in 2020 they are the second-best volleyball team. Poland won a gold medal in the World Championship in 1974 and the Olympic Games in 1976. For another title, they had to wait until 2009 when they became the European Champions. Since that time Poland is among the best ones. They won the last 2 World Championships, beating Brazil in both finals, and in big tournaments, they are on the podium almost all the time. That’s why they have so many points in the ranking. Polish fans expect that the big success is yet to come. In 2019 Wilfredo Leon joined the Polish National team. He’s considered one of the best volleyball players in the world. Additionally, Poland has a couple of young and talented young players and a great coach Vital Heynen who is also the coach of Sir Safety Perugia- one of the strongest volleyball teams. The best volleyball clubs you can find in this post.
Key players: Matthew Anderson, Maxwell Holt
Overall gold medals: 19
The USA has been one of the greatest volleyball teams since forever. It makes sense because this country is the birthplace of volleyball. More surprising volleyball facts find here. They have a strong team with a couple of supreme players like Anderson or Russell. They can win with anyone. It’s hard to believe, but the USA hasn’t won any tournament since the World Cup in 2015. They are close every time, though. In the World Cup in 2019 as well as the World Championship in 2018 they were third. In 2019, they won a silver medal in the Nations League. I like the way this team plays because you can see there’s potential and energy inside. All American players play outside the USA, specifically in Italy, Poland, and Germany.
Key players: Siergiej Grankin, Fedor Voronkov
Overall gold medals: 41
Who isn’t afraid of the Russian volleyball team. They have amazing and tall players like Dmitrij Muserskiy-one of the tallest players in volleyball. But he’s not the tallest in the world like many people think. Here’s the list of the tallest players in volleyball. I think Russia over the last years didn’t use their full potential, but the breakthrough is close because they won the Nations League in 2018 and 2019. Of course, they are far from the best appearances in history, because in the past they won 41 gold medals! Now they are 4th in the world ranking thanks to gold medals in the Nations League and good appearances in the European Championships. For sure, the domestic Russian League is also fantastic and it’s the second-best league in the world (after Italian), where almost all Russian players play and a couple of players represent probably the strongest club in the world Zenit Kazan.
Key players: Facundo Conte, Luciano De Cecoo
Overall gold medals: 8
I remember Argentina has always been a dark horse of every championship. They had young players who were hungry for success, but they didn’t have enough skills. Now the Argentinian team is treated seriously by everyone. They have the most awards at American tournaments like South American Games or Pan American Games and that’s one of the reasons why they’re so high in the world ranking. They won those competitions in 2018 and 2019. They also have solid appearances in other tournaments, including the World Cup in 2019 (5th place) and the Nations League in 2019 (7th place). Argentinian players are known in the whole world. Every volleyball fan should know Facundo Conte, Luciano De Cecco, or Cristian Poglajen.
Key players: Earvin N’Gapeth, Jenia Grebennikov
Overall gold medals: 3
N’Gapeth, Grebennikov, Toniutii, Le Roux. Do you know these names? If you want to call yourself a volleyball fan, there’s no way you don’t know at least 2 of them. France has amazing players, and they are another team that can win basically anything. Why didn’t they so far? Good question. Their latest success is from 2015 when they won a gold medal in the European Championship. Since that time they have better and better players, but no successes. I don’t know what’s the reason, probably lack of team play. True, they were second in the Nations League in 2018, they won the World League in 2017, but I think this team is able to do way better. 6th place is not enough for such a great team with such great players. They are solid, but they have the potential to be at least in the top 3 best men’s volleyball national teams.
Key players: Osmany Juantorena, Ivan Zaytsev
Overall gold medals: 29
Historically, Italy is one of the most titled volleyball nations in the world. But the last time they forgot how good they are. They are in similar situations to France. They have bright stars on the team, but it’s nothing if they don’t have a good strategy. The best Italian appearance in a serious competition was in 2016 and second place in the Olympic Games. Their present form is far from that. They can easily win weaker teams, but when it comes to playing against Russia, Brazil, or Poland, they have no chance. Maybe their players lost their motivation, maybe there are too few younger players? I don’t know. I believe that Italy will come back to their best times and show their best games in the Olympic Games because this is the only real tournament in which they don’t have any gold medal.
Key players: Milad Ebadipur, Amir Ghafur
Overall gold medals: 8
I’m into volleyball ever since I remember. And I remember Iran wasn’t always that great. They have started playing well since around 2010. Before that, they had had a hard time qualifying for every tournament. But something happened and right now Iran is one of the best men’s volleyball national teams in the world. True, they dominate only in the Asian competitions, but they are closer and closer when it comes to other greater tournaments. In the Olympic Games in 2016 and in the Nations League in 2019 they were 5th. They are the kind of team that can with the best, but sometimes they have problems with worse teams. They have good players that play in good clubs. The one word describing Iran is unpredictable.
Key players: Yuki Ishikawa, Naonobu Fujii
Overall gold medals: 18
Japan rules in the Asian Competitions, having won 17 out of 18 medals. Their biggest success is so far a gold medal in the Olympic Games, but it was a long time ago in 1972. Their favorite tournament seems to be the World Cup. In 2019, they were 4th, which is quite good. The progress is visible in this team. They don’t have players that would distinguish themselves, but they have great harmony and their teamwork looks promising. If they keep working hard as they do now, I’m sure they can be higher in this ranking. They should be proud of their new talent Yūji Nishida who can soon be one of the best volleyball players in the world.
Key players: Sharone Vernon-Evans, Steven Marshall
Overall gold medals: 1
Thanks to good appearances in the American Competition and solid matches with the best teams, Canada is in the top 10. Canada is another team able to win with the best. They proved it in the Olympic Games in 2016 ending up in the 5th place. In the World Championship they were 9th, but it’s a really difficult tournament. In the World League in 2017, Canada won a bronze medal. It was quite surprising back then. Overall, it’s a good team with an experienced coach that deserved to be among the best nations in the world.
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