Fortuna Düsseldorf’s sports director Lutz Pfannenstiel has asked the clubs supervisory board for an early termination of the contract for private reasons. Accordingly, the 46-year-old will leave Fortuna on May 31, 2020. His successor will be the current director of scouting and team planning Uwe Klein, who will be appointed by the supervisory board as sports director on June 1, 2020.
Lutz Pfannenstiel came from Bundesliga rivals TSG Hoffenheim and was appointed to the Board of Sports by the Fortuna Supervisory Board in December 2018. 50-year-old Uwe Klein has been responsible for scouting and team planning since 2014 and was part of the Fortuna coaching staff from 2002 to 2014.
Lutz Pfannenstiel said, “There are only private reasons that make it impossible for me to fulfill my contract with Fortuna beyond this season. I ask you to refrain from asking about the private situation. I am very grateful to the club for the opportunity it gave me. The cooperation on the board, with the supervisory board and the sports department was and is very good and I have always felt comfortable at Fortuna. So the decision that has been on my mind for some time has been very difficult for me. It is very important to me to ensure a clean transition and not to let Fortuna down. Therefore, I will continue to give everything for Fortuna until the end of the season and fully make my knowledge, network and commitment available to the club. The discussions with the top management board Björn Borgerding and Sebastian Fuchs were understanding and effective. I am glad that we have found a quick and professional solution, so that we can all concentrate together on our top and most important goal: avoid relegation of Fortuna!”
Björn Borgerding, Chairman of the Supervisory Board, said, “Lutz Pfannenstiel approached the Supervisory Board and asked for an early termination of the contract for private reasons. We have to respect his decision. However, we regret the decision because we are satisfied with his work and would have continued to rely on him in the future. However, as a supervisory board, it is also our responsibility to position the club as best we can for the future. In order to ensure that the squad planning for the coming season runs smoothly, director scouting and squad planning Uwe Klein will now be involved even more intensively in all sporting decisions so that all future plans can be decisively influenced. We are also pleased that with Uwe Klein we can present an ideal internal solution, so that he will take over the duties of the sports director from June 2020. I would like to expressly thank you, together with Sebastian Fuchs, for the trusting discussions with Lutz Pfannenstiel, Uwe Klein and with all members of the Supervisory Board who have made such a quick and effective solution possible.”
Uwe Klein, director of scouting and team planning, said, “I am very grateful to the club for the trust they have placed in me. Now it is important to continue working in a team on relegation and to push ahead with the planning for the coming season.”