KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: Long-serving Christian Seifert, one of the most effective league officials in world football, has said he will quit as ceo of the German Bundesliga on the expiry of his contract in 2022.
His decision is a further administrative blow for the German game which is still struggling to recover from the problematic state of the DFB under a succession of controversial presidents in the shape of Theo Zwanziger, Wolfgang Niersbach and Reinhard Grindel.
Seifert took the lead in negotiating a resumption in competitive football in Germany after the pandemic lockdown and created a model which encouraged the rest of the Europe. He will not be short of offers.
Bayern Munich chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge, who will also step down in 2022, described Seifert’s announcement as a “big loss for the Bundesliga.”
Rummenigge said: “He has done a first-class job for 15 years and the Bundesliga will benefit from it in the long term. I understand his reasoning; he is now 51 years old and at that age you think about whether you want to do something new again, then you have to do it now.”
Seifert has increased the league’s TV marketing rights from €400m per season to more than €1bn.
In a statement he said: “These are demanding times that demand clarity and reliability. That applies to the DFL as a whole and also to my professional ambitions. In two years I want to open a new professional chapter.”
The DFL will discover, as did the English Premier League after Richard Scudamore’s departure, that finding the right man for the job is no simple task.