KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTING —– Joachim Low is to step down as Germany’s national team coach after the European Championship finals in June and July.

The German DFB made the surprise announcement today that the 61-year-old will resign one year ahead of the formal expiry of his contract June 30, 2022 .

Low, in a statement on the DFB website, said: “I take this step very consciously, full of pride and enormous gratitude, but at the same time continue to be very motivated as far as the upcoming European Championship is concerned.

Joachim Low . . . more than 14 years in charge

“I am proud, because it is an honour for me to be involved on behalf of my country and because I have been able to work with our best footballers for almost 17 years and support them in their development.

“I have had great triumphs with them and painful defeats but above all many wonderful and magical moments – not only winning the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. I am and will remain grateful to the DFB, which has always provided me and the team with an ideal working environment. ”

DFB problems

Low is stepping out of the German federation while it is in the midst of problems of its own concerning leadership, structure and financial issues.

President Fritz Keller, in tribute to Low, described him as “one of the greatest coaches in world football.”

Low stepped up from his role as assistant to Jurgen Klinsmann in August 2006 and went on to guide Die Mannschaft to World Cup success in 2014, when they memorably defeated hosts Brazil 7-1 in the semi-finals.

Germany reached the semi-finals of Euro 2016, losing to hosts France, but then suffered an exit at the group stage of the World Cup for the first time in 2018 while also failing to impress in the inaugural UEFA Nations League campaign.
Germany are in Group F at Euro 2020, where they will face fellow heavyweights France and Portugal as well as Hungary, with all their matches set for the Allianz Arena in Munich.

Oliver Bierhoff, the DFB’s director of the national teams and academy, hailed a “special relationship” between the governing body and head coach.

He said: “Under Jogi, the national team once again stood for the joy of playing and attractive attacking football. This team and its players have developed incredibly with him. I regret that our professional paths will separate after the Euro.

“I know that Jogi’s full concentration and energy in the next weeks and months will only be used to prepare for the European Championship and we will continue to have a big common goal in the summer.”

Speculation about a successor will inevitably swirl around Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp, RB Leipzig’s Julian Nagelsmann and Bayern Munich’s Hansi Flick but the DFB may prefer a more low-key choice – as was Low himself.