Germany Part Ways With Coach Hansi Flick Ahead of Euro 2024
The German Football Association (DFB) has sacked coach Hansi Flick, nine months before they are set to host Euro 2024. The decision follows a demoralizing 4-1 defeat by Japan on Saturday.
Hansi Flick now holds the distinction of being the first and only head coach of the German national football team to be sacked from the position since its establishment in 1926.
Sporting Director and former head coach Rudi Voeller, who led the team to the 2002 World Cup final against Brazil, will take up the role on a temporary basis. The DFB plans to unveil Flick’s successor at a later date.
The decision to relieve coach Hansi Flick of his duties was deemed unavoidable by head of the DFB Bernd Neuendorf, due to the team’s recent string of disappointing results.
Neuendorf expressed the need for an atmosphere of optimism and confidence as Germany prepares to host the European Championships. He acknowledged that this (sacking Hansi Flick) was one of his most challenging decisions.
The Germans were thoroughly outplayed by the Japanese in a friendly match in Wolfsburg. Had it not been for Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s saves, the scoreline would have surpassed the 5-1 loss to England in 2001.
Germany’s recent performance has been lackluster, with four losses in six matches since their early exit from the World Cup in December.
The frustration of home fans was evident as they booed the German team at halftime, with some chanting “Hansi out” at the end of the match.
Germany has been reluctant to make significant changes to the coaching position, with none of Flick’s predecessors being sacked. Flick took over in May 2021 after Joachim Loew’s 15-year tenure ended, and was the 10th head coach of Germany’s national team since World War II.
Flick initially enjoyed success, winning his first eight matches as Germany’s head coach after leading Bayern Munich to seven trophies in just 18 months. However, since then, his record has declined, with only four wins in 17 matches and a disappointing group stage exit at the Qatar World Cup.
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Flick remained confident in his approach despite Saturday’s loss, and expressed his desire to continue in his role. He however, acknowledged the unpredictability of football.
Sporting director Rudi Voeller stated that emotions were running too high after the Japan defeat to make an immediate decision regarding Flick’s future.
“I suggest we collect ourselves and sleep on it,” Rudi Voeller said. “We are all a little in shock…a defeat like that hurts.”
Rudi Voeller assumed the role of interim coach in 2000 and guided the national team to the final of the 2002 World Cup where they suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Brazil.
His first test as caretaker coach will take place this Tuesday, with a friendly match in Dortmund against World Cup runners-up, France.