Before the basement duel with VfB

    Niko Kovac and VfL Wolfsburg are treading water: the first and so far only win of the season against Eintracht Frankfurt was followed by another defeat at Union Berlin – the fourth in seven games. While sports director Jörg Schmadtke, despite the sporting crisis before the basement duel against VfB Stuttgart, once again stood behind his coach, the patience of the owner VW seems to be coming to an end one floor up, reports “Sport Bild”. Accordingly, Thomas Reis, who was released in Bochum, is said to have already been chosen as the successor candidate.


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    “We don’t question the coach. And we don’t put it in the wind either,” the “Wolfsburger Allgemeine Zeitung” quoted Schmadtke on Wednesday. The 58-year-old has “great” trust in the former FC Bayern coach: “The coach is someone who thinks about things in a very reflective manner.” The “Wolves” have Kovac, who was hired in the summer and has so far averaged the points from one point per game, already the third coach within a year.

    Not only on, but also off the pitch, Kovac has recently had a difficult time: the discussions about Max Kruse’s release excluded, according to “Sport Bild” there have also been public statements about his former club Eintracht Frankfurt or about the “fears of existence” of professionals, who do not hold regular positions, caused confusion at management level. In the team, however, Kovac’s saying that he would return to the pitch with his brother and assistant coach Robert if necessary to ensure more toughness in the VfL game was not well received. With Stuttgart, Augsburg, Mönchengladbach and the cup game against Eintracht Braunschweig ahead of them, trend-setting weeks are beginning for both the club and its coach.

    If the 50-year-old doesn’t manage to turn things around, his time in Wolfsburg could end earlier than planned, regardless of Schmadtke’s words. According to the newspaper, the name of Thomas Reis has been haunting the hallways at VfL since his dismissal in Bochum. Born in Wertheim, he knows the club and the environment in Wolfsburg well, coached the U19s of the “Wolves” for three years between 2016 and 2019 – and was reportedly considered a candidate for the post of head coach even then.

    Since the promotion to the Bundesliga: All Wolfsburg coaches with a record

    Niko Kovac – 8 competitive games – 1.0 points per game

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    In office since July 1, 2022

    Florian Kohfeldt – 28 competitive games – 1.14 points per game

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    Term of office: October 26, 2021 to May 15, 2022

    Mark van Bommel – 13 competitive games – 1.15 points per game

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    Term of office: July 1, 2021 to October 24, 2021

    Oliver Glasner – 87 competitive games – 1.67 points per game

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    Term of office: July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2021

    Bruno Labbadia – 50 competitive games – 1.52 points per game

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    Term of office: February 20, 2018 to June 30, 2019

    Martin Schmidt – 22 competitive games – 1.18 points per game

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    Term of office: September 18, 2017 to February 19, 2018

    Andries Jonker – 19 competitive games – 1.47 points per game

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    Term of office: February 27, 2017 to September 18, 2017

    Valérien Ismaël – 17 competitive games – 1.12 points per game

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    Term of office: October 17, 2016 to November 5, 2016

    Dieter Hecking – 165 competitive games – 1.75 points per game

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    Term of office: January 1, 2013 to October 17, 2016

    Lorenz-Günther Köstner – 11 competitive games – 1.82 points per game

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    Interim coach from October 25th, 2012 to December 31st, 2012 (previously already in 2010 with 21 games, 1.62 points on average)

    Felix Magath – 52 competitive games – 1.23 points per game

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    Second term: 03/18/2011 to 10/25/2012

    Pierre Litbarski – 5 competitive games – 0.60 points per game

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    Interim coach from 02/07/2011 to 03/18/2011

    Steve McClaren – 24 competitive games – 1.21 points per game

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    Term of office: July 1, 2010 to February 7, 2011

    Armin Veh – 27 competitive games – 1.26 points per game

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    Term of office: July 1, 2009 to January 25, 2010

    Felix Magath – 85 competitive games – 1.86 points per game

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    First of two terms of office from 06/15/2007 to 06/30/2009

    Klaus Augenthaler – 56 competitive games – 1.16 points per game

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    Term of office: December 29, 2005 to May 19, 2007

    Coach Holger – 25 competitive games – 1.28 points per game

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    Term of office: July 1, 2005 to December 19, 2005

    Eric Gerets – 44 competitive games – 1.34 points per game

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    Term of office: April 4, 2004 to May 28, 2005

    Jürgen Röber – 48 competitive games – 1.42 points per game

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    Term of office: 03/04/2003 to 04/04/2004

    Wolfgang Wolf – 195 competitive games – 1.45 points per game

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    Term of office: March 23, 1998 to March 4, 2003 (took over in Wolfsburg’s first Bundesliga season on matchday 28 from promotion coach Willi Reimann)

    VfL Wolfsburg: Schmadtke is self-critical with regard to squad planning

    The outgoing managing director Schmadtke would have to take responsibility for a possible renewed failure as a coach after previously Florian Kohfeldt and Mark van Bommel. “Sometimes you have to be self-critical enough and question whether the analyzes you made were all correct in their entirety. Or whether you misjudged one or the other protagonist you have with you,” Schmadtke told the “WAZ” about squad planning. In the spring of next year he will be replaced by the previous sports director Marcel Schäfer – who should already be responsible for finding a new coach if the Wolfsburg downturn continues.

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