Klinsmann quits as Hertha Berlin boss

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Former USMNT coach Jurgen Klinsmann has put up a post on social media to explain why he will step down as Hertha Berlin’s manager, effective immediately, after just 10 weeks in charge.

Hertha’s assistant coach Alexander Nouri will take charge for their trip to last place Paderborn this weekend.

Klinsmann, 55, took charge of the Bundesliga club on a short-term basis in late November and has led them to three wins from his nine games in charge with three defeats, two of which came against title-chasing Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund.

In a post on his personal Facebook page on Tuesday, Klinsmann explained why he will no longer be the coach at Hertha and as USMNT fans are accustomed to, he didn’t hold back.

“In this way, I say a big thank you to all players, fans, spectators, supervisors and staff of Hertha BSC for the support, the many encounters and the exchange in the past ten weeks. This time was extremely exciting for me and brought many interesting new insights. The Club and the city have grown even stronger to my heart.

“At the end of November, we met the wish of the club leadership with a highly competent team and helped it in a difficult time. We were on a very good way in the relatively short time, thanks to the support of many people despite mostly difficult games, we now have six points distance from the relegation place. I am firmly convinced that Hertha will create the goal.

“As a head coach, however, I also need the trust of the people acting for this task, which is not yet done. Especially in the relegation fight, unity, cohesion and focus on the essentials are the most important elements. If they are not guaranteed, I can’t take advantage of my potential as a trainer and can’t live up to my responsibility either. After long consideration, I’ve come to the decision to give up my position as head coach and return to my original long-term role on the supervisory board. The followers, the players and the employees have grown to my heart during this time and that’s why I will continue to fever with Hertha. I’m still looking forward to many encounters in the city or in the stadium.”

This reasoning is a little strange because Hertha were Europe’s biggest spenders in the January window after splashing out $83 million as they signed midfielder Lucas Tousart from Lyon for $27.5 million (then loaned him back right away), striker Krzysztof Piatek from AC Milan for $24.2 million and the duo of Matheus Cunha and Santiago Ascacibar as the Berlin club also spent heavily in the summer before Klinsmann arrived.

Given Klinsmann’s role as an advisor to Hertha, the club where his son Jonathan is currently a goalkeeper (out on loan at St. Gallen this season) and the team his father supported, it seems like he will still be heavily involved at the club but will take a back seat. Many who know Klinsmann best believe he is much better suited to a technical director role than a coach and majority investor Lars Windhorst will want him to stick around.

This was Klinsmann’s first coaching job since he was fired by as USMNT head coach in November 2016 and it has gone fairly well as he’s steadied the ship at Hertha and pushed them away from the relegation zone, even if they did cough up a 2-0 lead in the German Cup to lose 3-2 to Schalke last week.

The German national team legend primarily leaves in California and has often talked about how comfortable his life is there and there were some other issues with him not having his coaching licenses to hand.

All in all it seemed like Klinsmann was doing Hertha a big favor rather than the other way around.

We all know by now that it is Klinsmann’s way or the highway and his departure is probably more about Hertha’s hierarchy not wanting to do things his way rather than their huge spending in the transfer market to upgrade the playing squad. It would have been fun to see how it all played out and it will be intriguing to see if Klinsmann will return to management in the coming months as he’s dipped his toes back in the water with a smidgen of success.