Hertha BSC has hired former USMNT head coach Jurgen Klinsmann as boss through the end of the season, the club announced Wednesday morning. Klinsmann replaces Ante Covic who had only been in the position since the summer.
The coaching position is Klinsmann’s first since he was fired from his post with the United States in 2016 and replaced by Bruce Arena amidst what would ultimately be a failed World Cup qualifying cycle.
Hertha sits 15th in the 18-team Bundesliga table, firmly in the relegation mix having lost its last four league games in a row. Aside from a four-match unbeaten run through late September and early October, Hertha has picked up just one points through its other eight league matches.
Klinsmann’s last Bundesliga spell came with Bayern Munich in the 2008/09 campaign, where he was sacked five matches from completion of his first season. The club sat third at the time of his firing and players later spoke of Klinsmann’s lack of tactical ability that led to dressing room turmoil. Klinsmann also led the German national team from 2004-2006 where he is credited with the birth of a youth revolution, overhauling the youth structure and helping the national team reload after a period of poor results.
Klinsmann had been appointed to the Hertha board just three weeks ago, saying he was “emotionally invested in” the club with his late father a big fan of the team while growing up in Berlin.
Covic had been with the club since 2003 first as a player – making 180 appearances in midfield over two stints – and then as a youth team and reserve coach.
“It was an extremely difficult decision for us, because Ante has been part of Hertha BSC for more than 20 years,” said Hertha sporting director Michael Preetz in the official team release. “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.”