Germany manager Joachim Low will quit after this summer’s European Championships following a 15-year spell in charge.
Low, who has held the position as Germany boss since 2006, having been promoted from No 2 following Jurgen Klinsmann’s exit that year, has been under intense scrutiny in recent times following some disastrous results and rumours of a rift with his players.
Germany were humiliated 6-0 by Spain back in November – their heaviest defeat in almost 90 years – as they finished runners-up in their UEFA Nations League group while Low was heavily criticised by some of his squad for axing experienced stars Thomas Muller, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng following their abysmal 2018 World Cup campaign.
Joachim Low has announced that he will step down as Germany boss after 15 years in charge
It comes just months after Germany were thrashed 6-0 by Spain in the UEFA Nations League
Liverpool’s Jurgen Klopp has been linked with the job for years and could be Low’s successor
The World Cup-winning trio were all told by Low back in March 2019 that they would no longer be part of his plans, which left them and senior Germany players like Toni Kroos baffled.
However, Low admitted over the weekend that he is considering making a U-turn and recalling Muller and Hummels to his squad ahead of the Euros.
Despite his recent struggles and Germany’s woeful performance at the last major tournament, where they failed to get out of the group stage at the World Cup in Russia, Low insists he can look back on his time in charge with immense pride.
Jerome Boateng (centre left), Mats Hummels (centre right) and Thomas Muller (right) have been omitted from Low’s squads since Germany’s shocking 2018 World Cup exit
Toni Kroos was one of several senior stars to have questioned Low’s decision to axe them
Low led Germany to World Cup glory in Brazil in 2014 after beating Argentina in the final
Who’s the bookies’ favourite to become next Germany boss?
Stefan Kuntz – 2/1
Jurgen Klopp – 3/1
Julian Nagelsmann – 6/1
Hans-Dieter Flick – 8/1
Jurgen Klinsmann – 10/1
Arsene Wenger – 16/1
Christian Streich – 20/1
*Odds supplied by Betfair
After the announcement on Tuesday, Low said: ‘I’m taking this step very consciously, full of pride and enormous gratitude, but at the same time will continue to be very motivated when it comes to the upcoming European Championships.
‘I’m proud, because it’s something very special and an honor for me to be involved in my country. And because I have been able to work with the best footballers in the country for almost 17 years and support them in their development.
‘I have great triumphs with them and painful defeats, but above all many wonderful and magical moments – not just 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 work environment.’
Under the 61-year-old, Germany have routinely reached the latter part of major international tournaments – aside from Russia in 2018 – and famously lifted the World Cup in Brazil in 2014.
Low has also twice led Germany to third-place finishes at the World Cup as well as two European Championship semi-finals and one final in 2008, where they suffered an agonising 1-0 defeat against Spain.
As well as delivering Germany’s fourth World Cup success seven years ago, Low also won the Confederations Cup in 2017.
His contract with the Germany national team ran until 2022 but Low has decided to cut it short to leave this summer.
Mario Gotze pictured scoring his iconic extra-time winner in the World Cup final in 2014
Low also won the 2017 Confederations Cup in Russia after Germany beat Chile 1-0 in the final
But Low has been under immense pressure in recent years, following some disastrous results
The news of his impending departure will now raise questions around Jurgen Klopp’s future at Liverpool.
Reports in Germany last month claimed that Klopp would be first-choice to replace Low and is keen to return to his homeland in the near future.
Klopp, who has a contract at Liverpool until 2024, has endured a torrid season and is in the midst of a crisis following six straight home defeats. He is, however, understood to have the unequivocal backing of Liverpool owners Fenway Sports Group and recently insisted he has no plans to walk away from the club.
The former Borussia Dortmund boss has been linked with the Germany post for some time, but quashed rumours back in November that he would leave Liverpool to take over the reins from Low.
‘Maybe in the future but now, no, because I have no time,’ he said.
‘I also have a job – a pretty intense job by the way.
Low insisted he can look back on his 15 years in charge of the national team with real pride
Low never won the Euros, but came agonisinly close in 2008, losing the final 1-0 to Spain
‘I am not sure if anybody has asked me but if they don’t know I have a job here at Liverpool.
‘I like it and I am responsible for a lot of things here so I will not go and search for another challenge.’
Germany legend Lothar Matthaus had led the calls for Klopp to replace Low as manager of Die Mannschaft and wanted to see him take charge before this summer’s Euros.
But Low, who received a vote of confidence from DFB President Fritz Keller the day after the 6-0 thrashing loss in Seville, will take charge for his final tournament before being replaced.
The German FA are expected to begin the search for his successor immediately with Klopp and their under-21 head coach Stefan Kuntz the early favourites.
Liverpool boss Klopp and Germany under-21 boss Stefan Kuntz are favourites to succeed Low