BERLIN, March 9: Germany’s World Cup-winning head coach Joachim Loew will step down after the European championships this July, the German FA said on Tuesday.
Loew will step down with a year left on his contract having signed up until the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar.
In a statement, Loew said he was “full of pride and enormous gratitude” after nearly 15 years as national coach and that he was “motivated” for his swansong at the rearranged European championships from June 11-July 11.
The 61-year-old nicknamed “Jogi” has been in charge of Germany since 2006 and lifted the 2014 World Cup in Brazil at the height of his tenure.
However, there have been calls for him to resign since Germany were hammered 6-0 by Spain in the Nations League last November.
That horror result followed two years of heavy criticism of Loew since Germany crashed out of the 2018 World Cup in Russia at the group stage.
Until that point, the Germans had reached at least the semi-finals of every tournament under Loew.
The fallout from the debacle in Russia tainted his legacy as he tried to rebuild the team.
His decision in March 2019 to end the international careers of veterans Thomas Mueller, Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels soon backfired.
The assured performances of Mueller and Boateng in 2019/20 helped Bayern Munich win the Champions League title and led to Loew constantly having to defend his decision to sideline them from the national setup.
Recently Loew has hinted that he may recall the exiled trio for Germany’s World Cup qualifiers at the end of March.
His record as coach is an impressive 120 wins in 189 games with Germany as well as 38 draws and 31 defeats.
“I have great respect for Joachim Loew’s decision,” German FA (DFB) president Fritz Keller in a statement.
“The DFB knows what it has in ‘Jogi’, he is one of the greatest coaches in world football.
“Jogi Loew has shaped German football like hardly anyone else over the years and has helped it achieve the highest international reputation.” (AFP)