If coach Michael Schiele from the Würzburger Kickers should have had illusions after the long drawn-out contract talks with the club, he quickly landed on the ground again. His three-year tenure, which he crowned with promotion to the second division this summer, ended after just two defeats in the first two league games. In addition, there were the lost state cup final on penalties against 1860 Munich and the end in the DFB Cup against the clear favorite Hannover 96.
Felix Magath had said at the beginning of July after the contract extension, which apparently only made promotion possible, “Michael is the right man to solve this difficult task in the 2nd Bundesliga with and with the Kickers”, that was Forgot everything again at the end of September.
The club had “come to the conviction that the great goal of staying up – to which everything has to be subordinated – can only be successfully pursued with a new impulse”. Magath was not quoted in this communication. However, it can be assumed that Schiele’s successor Marco Antwerpen, whose contract was not extended despite the promotion with Eintracht Braunschweig and whose commitment was announced at the same time as Schiele’s resignation, enjoys more trust in Magath.
Global initially stands for Germany and Austria
And since the beginning of this year, a lot has been dependent on that for the Lower Franconians. Main sponsor “Flyeralarm”, who holds 49 percent of the shares in the professional football club of Kickers, presented Magath in January as the head of a large-scale campaign. The global in its title initially only refers to Germany and Austria. The 67-year-old is also in charge of the Austrian Bundesliga club Admira Wacker Mödling, in which the company is active as an investor. In addition, “a project outside Europe” is to be added.
The similarity to the football activities of “Red Bull”, which include not only the engagements in Leipzig and Salzburg but also those in New York, Ghana and Brazil, is certainly not unwanted. For a long time, Ralf Rangnick, a German, was also the strong man at the Austrian shower manufacturer.
A lot to say in the club, even without an official position
In his almost 25-year coaching career with a dozen stations, Magath himself often suffered from the decisions of the club officials. It is no coincidence that in the end he was no longer just a trainer at both Wolfsburg and Schalke, at FC Fulham in England and at the Chinese SD Luneng, but also the manager.
After leaving the Middle Kingdom, Magath was without a job for a good two years. Then came the online printing company based in Würzburg, with big plans and extensive competencies for Magath. Company managing director Thorsten Fischer, who is also chairman of the supervisory board of Kickers, said at Magath’s introduction: “It would be fatal to chat in with Felix Magath. That’s not my style. And he knows a lot more about football than me.” The football expert has no official position at the Kickers.
Objective: Promotion to the Bundesliga – and the “Vision European Cup”
To do this, he has the big picture in mind – especially the big. “I will do everything to ensure that there are greater successes,” said the native of Aschaffenburg in the “Welt am Sonntag”. One can learn from Leipzig and Co. “It’s impressive what they have built up. But they are not only playing in a different league financially, so we cannot and do not want to compare ourselves here. But we will also break new ground.” But the goals are the same: “I can’t live with average and mediocrity. I always wanted to get to the top, always wanted titles.”
Sooner or later, Würzburg should be promoted to the Bundesliga. Magath already spoke of his “vision of the European Cup”.
Ex-trainer Magath: “I also had my time”
But the way to get there should be a long one. Even after coach Schiele’s leave of absence, things did not improve in Würzburg. HSV, where Magath last sat on the coaching bench in 1997, welcomes the last team as leaders. Antwerp has so far recorded one point against Fürth and one defeat against Kiel.
For a long time Magath was toying with a return to the big football stage in Germany. But not only at his ex-clubs Schalke (“Nobody would get the idea to speak to me”) and HSV (“Somebody should clean up this place”) he was no longer in demand. “Everything has its time, I also had my time,” said the 67-year-old when he was presented in Magath. The coaching career is over, there is no end in sight in Würzburg: “I assume this activity will only end when everyone is satisfied.”