Following the news of Hertha BSC’s decision to part ways with head coach Ante Covic and the appointment of Jürgen Klinsmann in his place, today’s training session was pushed back until 16:00 CET and moved to the pitch at the Wurfplatz/Amateurstadion.
Earlier at a press conference Klinsmann said, “My father was a proud Herthaner, my son played here for two years, it’s the only club that I’m actually a member of,” said the 55-year-old. “It just came to it, that I was asked whether I would help out the club in trying to stabilise their season. It’s an honour to take on such an exciting challenge and I’m incredibly motivated to do so!”
Klinsmann and Preetz also announced several new additions in terms of staff: former Bundesliga head coach Alexander Nouri will act as an assistant coach alongside former Bundesliga player Markus Feldhoff. Andreas Köpke will join until the end of the season as a goalkeeping coach. Former Hertha captain Arne Friedrich will also take up a new position as performance manager in which he will provide a link between the team and senior management. Werner Leuthard, “a swashbuckler with plenty of experience”, will join the fitness team. “I’ve brought in some new staff, all of whom are incredibly well prepared and are chomping at the bit to get started,” said Klinsmann. Harald Gämperle and Zsolt Petry will remain at the club, with their exact roles to be decided in the coming days.
Earlier after intensive discussions, sporting director Michael Preetz and Covic agreed a mutual termination of his contract as head coach.
Michael Preetz said, “It was an extremely difficult decision for us, because Ante has been part of Hertha BSC for more than 20 years. He has conducted himself with a lot of passion, expertise and meticulousness ever since he took over as head coach of the first team in the summer. We regret that it has come to this, but ultimately, in terms of development and recent results, we felt there was a need for action. I would like to thank Ante for his commitment and in time we will talk to him about alternative ways for him to be involved with Hertha BSC.”
Meanwhile former coach Ante Covic said, “The way we’ve been playing recently and the results have led to this decision. Since Hertha BSC is not just an employer to me, such a decision hurts, of course. But I have always said that this club is more important than individuals. I love not only this profession, but I love this club with all my heart.”