In recent years, fans of the German national team have grown accustomed to the promise of a fresh start, attractive soccer, and a return to winning titles. But this time, it wasn’t a lipped service. The German Football Association has officially announced the new head coach of the German national team, Hans Flick. He’s a familiar face in a different role, having gone from everyone’s favorite right-hand man, including Joachim Löw, to the top candidate for the post thanks to 20 months and seven titles with Bayern Munich.
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When he took over the German record champions, Flick was responsible for motivating a group of stars who were still winning titles under Niko Kovacic but had lost their spark. When he took over the role of national coach, there was a sense of déjà vu. I’m sure that those who followed my time at Bayern know the style of soccer that I and my team represent. I want us to be active, to show on the pitch that we know we are the best players in Germany, and to take the initiative.
Expectation levels set
At his first press conference at the new DFB campus in Frankfurt, the 56-year-old admitted that his path to the top of the German team was not the one I had imagined. He was part of the national team under Löw from 2006 to 2017, before his story came full circle during his glory days as sports director of Hoffenheim and Bayern.
Frick knows that winning silverware on the international stage won’t be as easy as it was on the assembly line of the title-winning factory in Munich. Jokes about having complete control over the selection of all players aside, Frick had the full backing of the German Football Association, unlike at Bayern. We want to be successful. That has always been the national team’s ambition, to win and inspire, said team manager Oliver Bierhoff.
At one point during his 15-year tenure, Löw, who won a Football World Cup with Germany for the sixth time, seemed poised to leave big shoes to fill that no one could. Instead, his former assistant Flick took the helm of the national team at a lower level than Löw himself, who replaced Jurgen Klinsmann after the 2006 Football World Cup at home.
Flick defended Löw, saying, if you put aside the last three years, in the years before that we reached the semifinals at every major tournament, won two titles, the Football World Cup and the Confederations Cup. For more details about Football World Cup Tickets.
Familiar faces an advantage
The biggest sticking point has been Löw’s inability to get the best out of a generation of German talent that was perfectly capable of having a decisive era at the highest level. That responsibility now falls to Frick, who has the advantage of working with the core of the Bayern national team. The mentality he brings could be key.
We must create a mentality of total commitment. For me, that means we have to give everything to leave the pitch as winners. The players have to show that they want to play for Germany and that they are focused on the task at hand. That is the example we want to set, and that is what we expect.
Frick will name his first team on August 26, stressing that it is important to me that the best German players also play for Germany, and that age plays no role in his decision. Frick will have 14 months from the qualifying match against Liechtenstein on September 2 to prepare for the Qatar Football World Cup 2022.
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