Hans-Dieter Flick is no longer Germany coach. This is unlikely to surprise anyone. After all, the team continued its catastrophic period in terms of results. On Saturday the Germans beat Japan 1:4. Yes, yes, to the same rival that humiliated them in the Qatar group and did not allow them to reach the playoffs. But in the 2022 World Cup the score was at least 1:2 and the defeat seemed like an accident. But with four to go, many questions arise.
It is important that this year is a year of preparation for Germany for Euro 2024 at home. But here are their results against Japan.
Germany – Peru – 2:0; Germany – Belgium – 2:3; Germany – Ukraine – 3:3; Poland – Germany – 1:0; Germany – Colombia – 0:2.
Only one victory in March, plus a draw with Ukraine. Then only defeats remain, which is definitely not what fans expect. Not to mention that Flick used a lot of new players, he looked for connections and everything else. No. Germany played as the strongest or almost the strongest. But he only hit the Japanese goal three times. Catastrophe.
How Germany came to Japan:
The German team falls from grace before the European Championship at home
This is how Rudi Völler, sports director of the national team, described the event: “We are all still in shock. The 1:4 defeat is a shame. We all need to evaluate ourselves. Hans is surprised. We need to calm down now.” It seemed like there was still hope in these words.
But on Sunday he died.
Flick’s dismissal is logical. But the choice of interim coach is interesting
Immediately after Japan, it is not the first time that the coach has been asked about a possible resignation. But this time with the question of whether he feels like the right coach for the team nine months before the start of Euro 2024. Flick was specific. Although the history of four victories in 17 games at the head of the national team probably influenced him a lot.
“We do everything possible to always prepare the team perfectly,” said Flick. “I think we’re doing well.” Yes, I am the right coach for the German national team. I still feel like I’m qualified for the job. But I also know that football is dynamic. So I can’t predict what will happen next.”
It is curious that Flick at the same time emphasized his own confidence, but also noted that anything can happen. But he was also allowed to train in the morning on Sunday. Apparently, a meeting of the leaders of the German Union took place during this period. In the afternoon Flick’s resignation was announced.
director of the german federation
“The German team needs new impetus after recent disappointing results. We need to regain the spirit of optimism and confidence before the European Championship that will be held in our country. For me personally, this is one of the most difficult decisions during my tenure as director, because I appreciate the professional and human qualities of Hansi Flick and his assistants. However, sporting success is a priority for the German Football Federation, so the decision was inevitable.”
Interim coach was Rudi Völler himself, who eloquently described what happened to the team after the game against Japan. He will prepare the team for the next match against France. Afterwards, the federation will probably approve another specialist for the position. Völler, 63, occupies this position for the second time, the first in 2000. Then it was also believed that he was a choice until the federation found a new coach. But the process dragged on for four years.
Hans-Dieter Flick with the German national team players
Photo: Lars Baron/Getty Images
What was the film that also influenced Flick’s future? And who will replace him completely?
A couple of days ago Amazon released a three-part documentary about the last stage of the German team. The company’s main condition during filming is that there be no external interference. It turns out that everyone could see the true reasons for what was happening, which led to failure. This is believed to be one of the reasons Flick was fired.
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After all, there, according to many, the true qualities of a coach were revealed. Including memes. For example, in Qatar he showed the team motivational videos with geese, where he encouraged them to learn unity and cohesion from them. He threw a bunch of other cliché phrases at the players. And all this with an absolutely poker face.
There were disputes over the One Love headband and many other issues that interfered with concentration on football. At the same time, Flick himself often did not seem like a person who could come together with an idea.
And this is after the treble with Bayern, where Flick developed the image of an ideal psychologist and motivator who did not bother anyone. His invitation to the national team was perceived as a victory for the federation: taking away a coach from the best club in the country is a worthy achievement. But it seems that Flick’s methods still work for the over-30 generation, but do not correlate with the demands of younger footballers. Apparently they just don’t take his ideas seriously.
But the main thing is what follows. The German Union will have to choose a new coach. Unless, of course, Völler shows something extraordinary in the match against France and is offered to stay. The main candidate is Julian Nagelsmann, who is still unemployed after being fired by Bayern. The confusing factor is his own youth, lack of experience working with national teams and his current contract. After all, Bayern are still paying Julián’s salary due to a large one-off penalty. Therefore, this issue will also need to be closed.
Photo: Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
The DFB has no other obvious candidates. Yes, this happens nine months before the home Euro Cup. It therefore seems unlikely that Flick’s dismissal will immediately resolve the national team crisis.