doesn't seems to hope much about the new contract
Q:: Hello, Mr.Octavian
Belu, (ex)coach of Romanian Olympic
Belu: Yes, that's me.
Q:: (Just kidding, too stupid to believe but who
knows...) We supposed to talk next week [we have had two short
talks and interviews with Octavian
Belu this week, part of a larger discussion]
about your future plans, but things seems to change so fast?...We
get reports from Bucharest about TV's statements from RGF
which does not sound too nice or good for your future at Deva.
At least, we need yours confirmation about your "resignation"
about which everybody already talk, to send you the offer(s)
we may have for you, as a retired coach....
Belu: Yes, this time is different, I
didn't know it can happen like this. I think there are not
many chances to continue my job here.
Q:: How come that all these negotiations are not
between you and RGF, but more through press statements? Press
should report only, not be a part of negotiations?...
Belu: I don't have much to talk to them
about this, they have a strong position [about having a 4-year
contract/Q:] and I can't do much about...
Q:: Excuse me, isn't this another "statement
war" , like in the past, as many others cases, we somehow
get used with them?...
Belu: No, this time is different, this
time things are clear. They want to push me for a four year
contract which we never have had in the past. Two years was
Q:: Somehow there is a reason behind this, R.O.C.
(Romanian Olympic Comity) want to start fresh and be safe
for the new Olympics. But, you need to know/see (as we have
discussed few days ago) which are the girls for the new Olympic
Belu: Yes, they want me to make a commitment,
without known on what I stand-if I don't know which are the
girls I can count, how can I promise anything, it wouldn't
be fair from me?...
[ excerpt from a 3 days ago interview for
Q:: from our sources and estimations, only two
girls,at best, can be considered "for granted" for
the Beijing Olympics?
Belu: It would be good if I/we be able
to have at least two girls from present team, "as granted"
in the team for 2008.But we can't be sure even for two, until
next year W.C.]
Q::we have the feeling, from all
your press statements, that you don't like, on the first place,
the way they talk to you, the way they handle the whole situation?
Belu: yes, nobody talk directly to me
more about this new contract, "they"[RGF] just told
me they want the four year Contract and that's it.
Q:: considering that you are (according to statistics,
not opinions) the best gymnastics coach in the world, at least
you deserve the "effort" to have some concessions
made or at least to speak more about your demands?In a more
Belu: exactly, I have my pride maybe,
but I'm doing my job and I expect others to do their, too.
Now (Sunday afternoon in Bucharest) I'm with the girls in
the gym hall, training for Birmingham.
Q:: Our sources advised us that some news about
this new contract will come Tuesday...
Belu: I don't think so or don't have
much hopes about, we (me and the girls) will leave Tuesday
for Birmingham, so how come we can discuss more?...
Q:: But also our inside sources said some (younger)
coaches from around the country see this moment like a good
moment for them to take your(s) places, to make some changes
and they believe they can have results, too. People say "after
Bela Karoly left, Goreac came and we have had results; after
Goreac left, Belu came and we get results. If Belu leave,
somebody else we came and we may have results, too"
Belu: yes, this is true. [He seems to
be very sincere and really believe this]
Q:: well, I don't ;t trust much on this, because
back then there were different times. [ the sport, the top
sport, being then the only way you can travel abroad; now
Romanians can travel freely and most young coaches can easy
get a good job abroad without having any problems like those
from Deva]. I don't think or see many young coaches ready
to give up everything-family, friends-and moving to Deva for
five years. And work like Hell, to get results, with new girls.
I hope but I don't see- they can get better payment(s) and
living standards at any second-class gym club around the world.
Belu: yes, this is true, to get (top)
results you have to give up everything else.
Q:: Will you discuss more with RGF next days?
Belu: Just saw at TV a statement of
Mr. Stoica (from RGF), saying that they can handle the future
with or without me. If this is the way they want to have an
Q:: I saw that you have said to the press [to
Evenimentul daily] about some of yours offers, including about
the offer to write a book [our decision at Q: was to
not disclose this before Belu do or the new contract discussions
will end, one way or another]. Do they know that, this time
at least, you have (six to seven figures) good offers to do
something different, at lower "costs" for you, meaning
no more long working hours? Can we mention this no that you
said about the book offer you have ?[at least one we know
for sure about- r.g.com]
Belu: yes, you can say about this. I
don't have much hopes anyway to work at Olympic team after
Q:: will see, at least we can't understand this way of
"negotiating": through press statements instead
of long hour of talks, negotiations between your agent/lawyer
and their. This is a professional way to conduct a business
or organization. The way is done now, through a "third
party"-this is what media has become, at least this is
the was we see from distance- is not the best way to achieve
results. It's just bad communication and no wonder so many
problems [scandals] were "floating" around the team
or former members...
Belu: I didn't make any more statements,
just answered to what journalists have asked me, but last
two days I saw many saying "we can work without him".
Maybe somebody doesn't want me any more at the team, I can
leave, no problem.
Q:: we have asked many of the former top gymnasts
from the Olympic team and came up with few conclusion:
1. If Belu goes, all girls from Athens will go, too. They
are used with Belu and a new coach will see them at "the
2. No Belu, less results, simply because , no matter how hard
is to work with him, at least girls trust him because of his
past "medal records" and are ready to more enduring
with somebody which they are sure deserve such efforts.
3. Everybody abroad will credit less our team and will loose
some years to build another reputation.
Even the girls which are not yours best friends now, have
admitted that there is almost impossible to find now (during
these times) such a dedicated man to his work. It's too hard.
Belu: very interesting conclusions,
a surprise for me to hear you have made so fast such a deep
analisz, but I do think that eventually somebody else will
get over the situation, anyway.
Q:: Better safe than sorry... We don't want to
loose any medal from Beijing simply because somebody-on one
or another side- don't now or want to negotiate more...you
now that we can't say we are a kind of friends, not even close...
Belu: (kind of laughing)
Q:...or at least, not yours greatest unconditionally
fans (me and most of our team), we simply respect your work
and results. During our past weeks (undisclosed) talks, regarding
yours projects for the future of the team, the improvement
which can be made-like the insurance coverage of all girls,
yours plans for some changes and the opening which you have
showed to ours (many) ideas proved to us that at least, you
are a person to whom you can talk to (and he listen to what
you say). How come that your closest job partners (RGF) can't
do the same?
Belu: told you that RGF asked me to
came up with all my plans for the future Olympics and all
ideas for improvement, on paper.But now, with all these statements
from them, don't know if I will have a job after will return
from Birmingham. Let's see next days.
Q:: thanks for talking to us and we hope for the
best for Romanian gymnastics and wish you all the best, too!
Romanian Gymnastics News Archive.