Bundesliga News

Leitl linked with Schalke and Hertha jobs

By Peter Vice   @ViceytheSS

Reports began emerging yesterday in Germany's main sporting tabloid that SpVgg Greuther Fürth head-coach Stefan Leitl had agreed to a separation from his current club after the conclusion to the season. 

According to both German footballing magazine Kicker and Fürth sporting director Rachid Azzouzi, this is not true. 

German sources reporting on the matter nevertheless do lend some credence to reports that the 44-year-old may be coaching a different team next year.
Stefan Leitl.
Stefan Leitl.
Frank Linkesch of German footballing magazine Kicker flatly denies a report surfacing in Sport Bild yesterday claiming that head-coach Stefan Leitl of SpVgg Greuther Fürth had agreed to take the coaching reins at FC Schalke 04 next season.

Linkesch does report, however, that Leitl has an exit clause in his current contract. A switch to a different team can thus not be ruled out for the 44-year-old.

After coaching Fürth for just over three years, Leitl has been generating some interest among other clubs. Fürth's promotion campaign last year earned him significant respect. Despite the fact that the Kleeblätter finished second in the 2020/21 2. Bundesliga, they were widely regarded to be the best team in that particular field.

Leitl has earned further accolades for ensuring that his last-placed-team (five points in the 2021/22 German Bundesliga Hin-Runde) did not give up during the season's second half even though relegation was all but certain. Fürth have picked up 11 points through 11 rounds of the "Rück-runde" and even strung together an impressive home unbeaten run at one point.

FC Schalke 04 are in the market for a new head-coach after parting company with Dimitrios Grammozis early last month. Linkesch reveals that there is likely some interest from S04 sporting director Rouven Schröder. Hertha BSC count as another club who will need a new trainer irrespective of whether they find themselves contesting the first or second division next season.

Linkesch's confirmation of an exit clause in Leitl's contract does point in the direction of a move. Fürth, who will almost certainly be relegated, might take advantage of the opportunity to obtain a transfer fee for Leitl as part of their rebuilding process.

Speaking to transfermarkt's German website, SpVgg sporting director Rachid Azzouzi denied specific reports of any dealings with other clubs. The club executive did note that there had been talks with Leitl about his future.

"We maintain open and honest dealings with one another," Azzouzi said, "and are in exchange about how things might look next season in all directions."

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