By Peter Weis@PeterVicey

Kicker Report: Bobic and Wohlgemuth touted as potential replacements for Schäfer at Wolfsburg

With VfL Wolfsburg supervisory board chairman Frank Witter committed to installing a third front office manager, Fredi Bobic and Fabian Wohlgemuth are being traded as potential replacements for departed club managing director Marcel Schäfer. 

While VfL Wolfsburg ostensibly negotiate a transfer fee from the German Red Bulls as compensation for the plucking of managing director Marcel Schäfer, club supervisory board chairmen Frank Witter is on record as stating that he wishes to have "three managers in place" in the VfL's front office. For the time being, former VfL Bochum sporting director Sebastian Schindzielorz will take over Schäfer's position. Newly appointed head-coach Ralph Hasenhüttl - as is much more common in English football - will also receive an official managerial title. 

In his public comments on the matter at press conferences this week, Hasenhüttl has emphasized his commitment to the club in spite of the departure of the man who just hired. Such a situation isn't unprecedented in German football at all. It nevertheless remains unusual. The last time a manager left a top-tier-side shortly after hiring a new trainer to lead the team occurred with 1. FC Köln sacked Horst Heldt just days after the long-time German footballing executive installed Steffen Baumgart in the summer of 2021.

"One commits oneself to a task and not an individual," Hasenhüttl remarked at a Thursday presser, "I took it very professionally. The system [coach-manager] is well known to me from time in England. I had an immediate bond with Marcel, but football is detached from personalities. We are professional employees who must do their job." 

Schäfer's surprise departure came shortly after (to the surprise of many) a loss to Gladbach in Hasenhüttl's home debut at the Volkswagen Arena (combined with some other results over the weekend) dragged Germany's green company team back in the Bundesliga's relegation race. It stands to reason that the northern "Autostadt" club will wish to focus on securing safety first before making a major hire. 

Witter - as quoted by the German associated press - made it clear that Schindzielorz was a candidate to retain the top managerial position. The 45-year-old engineered VfL Bochum's return to the top flight as the Revierklub's chief personnel executive for many years. The fact that Schindzielorz hasn't been with the club for long, however, does mean that other names are being traded. 

Former Stuttgart, Frankfurt, and Hertha sportiv CEO Fredi Bobic has been without a job since the Charlottenburg capital city side terminated him near the end of the January 2023 transfer window. VfL Wolfsburg correspondent for Germany's Kicker Magazine, Thomas Hiete, claims that VfB Stuttgart sporting director Fabian Wohlgemuth is also in the mix. 

Wohlgemuth's departure from Stuttgart seems unlikely given that the 45-year-old presently presides over one of the league's most sensational success stories. It is rumored that Wohlgeuth is also in line for promotion and a pay-raise in Swabia. It nevertheless may be the case that the native north German might be persuaded to rejoin the club at which he served as a scout and administrator between 2011 and 2018.

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