Low ahead of wm season: top level “ever tighter”

low ahead of wm season: top level 'ever tighter

Joachim low has an exciting few months ahead of him, and his assistant hansi flick is facing a reorientation. The goal is to qualify for the world cup as quickly as possible, then the team’s own future will be at stake – and the personnel issue of flick will have to be resolved.

“It”s about time things got going again,” said the national coach, reporting back from his summer vacation. Low does not expect german soccer to be a self-runner in the world cup season, which is expected to end with the world cup triumph in brazil that fans are longing for.

"It would be naive to believe that from now on the german clubs will dominate in europe. And it would also be naive to believe that there will now be a wake-up call," low told the "bild am sonntag" newspaper. There is "no certainty" in the world cup season that FC bayern and borussia dortmund will again reach the champions league final as they did in the previous season. "The difference between the top clubs from germany, england, spain and again italy is minimal, it is getting narrower," the national coach emphasized. This also applies to the national teams.

For low and the german national soccer team, the world cup season begins on 14. August with a test in kaiserslautern against paraguay. The DFB head coach plans to talk to his colleagues from the bundesliga on the phone in the coming days and name his squad on thursday. The world cup ticket could be drawn as early as september. The german football federation (dfb) and the national team"s sporting directors have already announced that they will then discuss a possible extension of the contracts of low, assistant flick, manager oliver bierhoff and goalkeeper coach andreas kopke.

Flick’s personnel case has now taken on special significance. Low’s assistant is heiber’s candidate for the vacant position of DFB sports director. Association president wolfgang niersbach and general secretary helmut sandrock consider the 48-year-old flick to be competent and a good fit for the job profile, even though niersbach officially told the "bams" once again: "we do not comment on names and do not participate in speculation."According to the sports magazine kicker, flick, who had been contacted by the dfb’s top management, had already expressed his basic willingness to take over from robin dutt, who had been released at his own request in may.

The main problem seems to be the timing of the move from low’s crew to the director’s chair at the DFB. Flick still wants to be responsible for the 2014 world cup in brazil with low as coach – then the vacuum in the association would remain for a few more months. Both the national coach and flick himself are said to reject a temporary dual function. However, the national team co-coach is already involved in matters concerning the DFB junior teams.

Niersbach actually wants to present a solution by the DFB’s national convention in october. But the president also said: "we are not under any time pressure, but it was certainly necessary for us to draw up an internal concept paper."The competencies and tasks of the sports director have been the subject of heated public debate. Even the german football league (DFL) had criticized the move. "Wolfgang niersbach and i have had a four-eye discussion and have a clear line on this," reported league president reinhard rauball.

The role for the successor to matthias sammer and dutt thus seems clear: as preferred by low himself, the national coach is to remain the top boss; the sports director is to be responsible for the elite area underneath. This also means that the DFB first had to decide on the question of the national team coach, and then fill the post of sports director in a subordinate capacity.

Low is currently more concerned about another problem, the question of the final quarters at the world cup. "Maybe we’ll fly to brazil again in the next few weeks," the 53-year-old announced: "ideally, we’d wait until the world cup draw at the beginning of december to make a decision."

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