Women’s football: DFB women against the national coach before a visit from the Federal Chancellor

The lost European Championship final in 2022 will probably remain the highlight for Martina Voss-Tecklenburg as national coach.

Photo: image/Eibner

The coughing fit came very suddenly. Lena Oberdorf had just stood in front of the glass front of the Melia Hotel Frankfurt City and heard the first question when the young manager of the German footballers choked so hard that it had the greatest possible symbolic effect: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s surprising public appearances caused the DFB women are in a huge mood at their new beginning under interim coach Horst Hrubesch for the games in the Nations League next Friday in Sinsheim against Wales and four days later in Reykjavik against Iceland.

»It gives me a few question marks, of course. I would definitely have wished for something different. That you say: Okay, let’s first clarify what happened at the World Cup – and then go on vacation. “Nevertheless, that’s what happened now,” said the 21-year-old. The expression on the face of the midfielder from VfL Wolfsburg when faced with all the unresolved questions about the future of senior DFB employees spoke volumes: The team has now developed the greatest possible distance from the headstrong national coach, who is ruining her own future in the association. Behind the scenes, the termination of the contract, which runs until 2025, is probably being negotiated with their lawyer Christoph Schickhardt, although the matter also made DFB President Bernd Neuendorf look very bad, who must have been aware of the activities on vacation.

After the start of the Nations League, which was botched 0-2 against Denmark, and the 4-0 win against Iceland in their second appearance on the way to the desired Olympic qualification, the players actually wanted to get rid of the coaching problem, which is now resurfacing under Hrubesch’s permanent interim solution. “That’s not my topic,” explained the 72-year-old tight-lipped, who apparently doesn’t see the events as a nuisance. Internally there is talk of sticks between the legs.

He no longer has contact with Voss-Tecklenburg, who gave Hrubesch an intact community for the 2019 World Cup at the end of 2018: »Britta Carlson is also there, who did the games beforehand. The DFB will then have to decide how this is regulated. That, s not my Beer. I hope that it will ultimately be four games. The new emergency rescuer would also like to be responsible for the decisive second leg against Denmark in Rostock on December 1st in order to ideally reach the final tournament for the two free teams in February 2024 as the winner of Group A3 in the Nations League Olympic starting places to play.

For Voss-Tecklenburg, all of this is now a long way away: the 55-year-old spoke about “team building and coaching from the world of sports” at the “Forum Intelligentes Bauen” in Bremen two weeks ago, with the approval of her employer, and then last Thursday at the Bavarian Dentists’ Day in Munich about “Change Management in Women’s Football”. In terms of labor law, there is nothing wrong with such lectures, which are generally well-paid, but the moral side remains. The fact that the head coach, who was initially on sick leave after the World Cup debacle, was the first to speak on such stages stunned several national players. Anyone who is immediately looking for such a spotlight again after “mental and physical exhaustion”, as husband Hermann Tecklenburg described the national coach’s condition, should actually have the chutzpah to talk to people who have gone through ups and downs with you for four and a half years.

Hrubesch also learned about the disturbed communication with his predecessor from conversations in Australia, but for him that is not enough of an explanation for the World Cup failure. “I’ve always tried to give the girls the message: They have personal responsibility.” The interim coach sees the fact that Chancellor Olaf Scholz has announced his visit to the DFB campus this Tuesday as a “clear appreciation” because: »It’s not the first time he’s been there. We’ll enjoy this.”

For the next few days, Hrubesch will be concerned with conveying a game idea in theory and practice that will provide stability again after the uncertainty. Because women’s football has become “significantly faster, more agile,” he wants to see “a faster pace.” Slow build-up play should be a thing of the past; long balls are not forbidden. Against Wales and Iceland you should “go all out for goals”.

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