Why Sebastian Hoeneß had to leave TSG Hoffenheim

ZTwo days before the last game of the season, Sebastian Hoeneß handed out a round of ice cream for his fortieth birthday at the TSG 1899 Hoffenheim club grounds, combined with an urgent request to his players: “I don’t want to see a summer kick in Mönchengladbach. We want to have a conciliatory conclusion and ideally get a threesome.”

Hoeneß’ wish was not granted. It was the sixth defeat from the last nine winless games in the Bundesliga at 1:5. Three days later, the son of former international Dieter Hoeneß and nephew of Bayern patron Uli Hoeneß was fired.

Hoeneß’ Hoffenheimer had weaknesses

He, who just a few weeks ago was highly praised by Alexander Rosen, Hoffenheim’s director of professional football (“cool, honest guy, no braggart, strong communicator, absolute football expert”), still has to go after all the compliments.

In the end, only the normative force of the factual counted for the club, which on the 25th matchday as fourth in the table still seemed on course for the Champions League and finally ended up in ninth place in the gray no man’s land of the table. But that didn’t please the more ambitious executives in tranquil Kraichgau, where the pressure from the fan base is easier to withstand than at the league’s hotspots. At the same time, at the Hoffenheim venue, they don’t just covertly look at the table places reserved for international suitability.

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In the end, the team, which had been delivering reliably for months, lacked the competitive toughness and stability that made less well-heeled clubs like Union Berlin or SC Freiburg future Europa League starters at the end of this season. Hoeneß’ Hoffenheimer, on the other hand, suffered when it came down to themselves and their blatant defense weaknesses. The side with the fourth-weakest defense at 61 goals conceded, despite having the fifth-best offense in the league (58 goals), could not score enough goals to make up their biggest deficit. Even the level-headed Hoeneß did not find the key to counteract the fatal trend.

In the season analysis by the sporting management, Rosen answered the “crucial question” as to whether “we can start a new season in this constellation” with no. In his closing remarks, Sebastian Hoeneß stated that there was “no consensus on the future direction” of TSG.

As a result, after the 34th matchday, four football teachers left the Bundesliga, which was not a suitable venue for longer-term job guarantees. After Adi Hütter’s stylish departure in Mönchengladbach, Markus Weinzierl’s angry goodbye in Augsburg and Florian Kohfeldt’s farewell without comment in Wolfsburg, Sebastian Hoeneß is now also saying goodbye to the Bundesliga for now.

It is not clear whether he will return to the big show stage. The quiet Hoeneß, so completely different from the Bundesliga protagonists Uli and Dieter Hoeneß, who were sometimes louder at their wedding, wanted to let the results of his work speak for themselves. In the end, however, they were no longer enough to be able to advertise themselves.



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