Oliver Bierhoff has resigned as DFB president, leaving the German football federation following Germany’s early exit from the 2022 World Cup.
For the second consecutive men’s World Cup, Germany was eliminated in the group stage. They lost to Japan which left them trailing to Spain on goal differential despite winning their last group match against Costa Rica.
Bierhoff’s departure from the DFB, which includes his positions with the German academy and the national team, was officially announced on Monday. He was supposed to stay there until 2024, but he quit before then because of how poorly they performed in Qatar.
Bierhoff led the creation of a €150 million (£129 million) coaching center in Frankfurt as part of his work on creating the Germany of the future.
The former striker for the German national team had been employed by the German FA since 2004 and was involved in their World Cup victory in 2014 and Confederations Cup triumph three years later.
Bierhoff, 54, stated in a statement about himself: “I’ve told German FA president Bernd Neuendorf of my decision today. I’m clearing the path for setting a new course.”
He continued, saying: “My work was founded upon the conviction of doing my best for the German FA and the national teams. But that only makes the results of the men’s national team at the World Cups in Russia and Qatar more painful. That’s why I’m not leaving without the necessary self-criticism.”
“We didn’t manage to repeat previous successes and to give supporters reason to cheer in the last four years. Some decisions we had been convinced of turned out wrong. No one regrets that more than me. I take responsibility for that.”
The DFB’s president, Bernd Neuendorf, stated on its website: “Oliver Bierhoff has provided the DFB with immeasurable service. He has been a part of significant occasions, despite the fact that we haven’t met expectations on the field in recent competitions.”
“His work will forever be intertwined with our World Cup triumph in Brazil. Even in turbulent times, he always followed his goals and visions and has helped shape the DFB in a sustainable manner.”
“I want to thank Oliver Bierhoff on behalf of all the staff at the DFB for everything he has done for us and football in Germany. He consistently followed his objectives and visions despite challenging circumstances, which helped to sustainably reshape the DFB.”
Hansi Flick, the manager of Germany, has also had his position called into question following their World Cup defeat, but he will remain in his position for the time being till a new head of the DFB is identified.
Both Hans-Joachim Watzke, the CEO of Borussia Dortmund, and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, the former president of Bayern Munich, are rumored candidates to succeed Bierhoff at the DFB.
Prior to hosting the 2024 Euros, Germany must go through a process of regaining confidence in their national team.
Their World Cup campaign in Qatar started with an unexpected 2-1 loss to Japan, but they bounced back to tie with Spain, defeat Costa Rica 4-2, and then lost the second spot to Spain on inferior points.
Oliver Bierhoff, a former forward who now officiates German football, was born on May 1, 1968.
He previously worked for the German Football Association as the national team director.
Bierhoff, a tall, powerful, and prolific goal scorer, was best known for his exceptional aerial skills and his ability to serve as a target man and send pinpoint headers toward the goal.
In the Euro 96 championship game, Bierhoff scored the first golden goal in the annals of big international football for Germany, a performance that launched him into the spotlight on a global scale.
Hansi Flick After World Cup Exit
Germany is a footballing nation that is more accustomed to losing in the semifinals than being eliminated in the group stage. But now, it seems to have become somewhat of a habit.
German football was at a crossroads after Joachim Löw oversaw his reigning champions’ collapse in 2018 and loss to eventual champions England in the 2021 EURO.
Many supporters of the squad believed that Hansi Flick would be able to work his magic right away as he was doing at Bayern Munich. Hence, the changeover was considered as a chance for renewal.
However, that hasn’t happened, and the ire that was formerly focused towards Löw is now being turned on his replacement.
Flick was questioned about stepping down following the Costa Rica match, which Germany won but in which their disqualification was ultimately upheld.
The manager’s response was uncommittal.
“We’ll work that out quickly, it’s difficult to answer now right after the game when we’re eliminated,” Flick said (via @iMiaSanMia). “We’ll see about that very soon.”
Two early exits in a succession must be a nightmare if one was deemed chaotic. Even though Flick hasn’t been accountable for everything, the DFB is sure to look everywhere during the upcoming investigation.