Schuster the latest successful German export
Bernd Schuster never made it past the second division as a coach in Germany but recently got what is arguably the most coveted job in the business with a three-year deal at Real Madrid.
Scotland will probably never hire a German coach again after Berti Vogts’s uneasy reign and it’s a safe bet no German will ever coach Cameroon again after Winfried Schaefer left under a cloud.
But despite those and some other less than amicable split-ups, Germans still regularly fetch up on club and country benches around the world.
Juergen Klinsmann, who led Germany to third place in the World Cup and was recently linked with Chelsea, will probably be the next top German coach snapped up.
The list of Germans coaching national teams abroad now or in the past is long: Otto Rehhagel in Greece, Klaus Toppmoeller in Georgia, Vogts in Scotland and now Nigeria, Uli Stielike in Switzerland and Ivory Coast, Hans-Peter Briegel in Albania and then Bahrain, Schaefer in Cameroon, Otto Pfister in Togo and many other nations, Bernd Stange in Iraq, Holger Osieck in Canada and Lothar Matthaeus in Hungary.
Germans have also made their marks as club coaches in foreign leagues. To name a few: Guido Buchwald in Japan, Christoph Daum in Turkey, Joachim Loew in Austria and Turkey, Jupp Heynckes in Spain, Werner Lorant in Turkey and South Korea, Matthaeus in Brazil and Austria, and Ernst Middendorp in South Africa.
Why are German coaches in such demand? Is it because, in line with the old cliche, they’re seen as such good organisers? It can’t just be that they want to get away from Germany, can it?
Erik Kirschbaum, Berlin