Germany boss granted “time and emotional distance” as pressure grows ahead of Euro 2020

The German Football Association (DFB)has announced a plan to grant Joachim Low  “time and emotional distance” following Germany’s heavy to Spain, with Oliver Bierhoff to lead an assessment of the national team’s future. Last week, Spain handed Germany its worst defeat for the first time in 89 years, winning 6-0 to advance to the final four. Ferran Torres scored a hat trick to lead Spain to the historic victory.

The DFB president Fritz Keller offered Low his support in the aftermath of the shock result in Seville, as did team director Bierhoff. However, the DFB announced earlier this week a “timetable” to assess the “situation” of the national team following the defeat. “The DFB presidential board has unanimously agreed on a timetable to gather information, evaluate it and advise on next steps,” a statement read.

It was their first loss of 2020, yet they won only three of their eight matches in Group A4, also drawing with Spain, Switzerland twice and Turkey. “This also gives the national team head coach enough time and emotional distance to fundamentally review the national side’s current situation,” the statement added. Bierhoff will report about the assessment during the presidential board meets on December 4.

Earlier, Germany’s general manager Bierhoff backed under-fire manager despite the loss saying that “the game today changes nothing” amid Low’s worries about his job. “In 2014, Brazil fell apart on the pitch and it happened to us today. I hope it’s a singular event,” Bierhoff said in earlier reports. “[Low] still has our trust, and the game today changes nothing.”

Germany have not been beaten so heavily since losing to Austria by the same scoreline in a friendly in 1931. Germany’s only five-goal loss in a competitive match had been West Germany’s 8-3 defeat to Hungary at the 1954 World Cup group stage. West Germany went on to beat Hungary in the final, while the friendlies in Austria in 1931 handed them the 6-0 score.

Pressure grows on World Cup-winning coach Low after the historic defeat, claiming that he is “worried” about his future in the team following the “awful” performance. Low has been in charge since 2006, finishing third at the 2010 World Cup before claiming the title four years later. At the European Championships, Germany reached the final in 2008 and the semi-finals in 2012 and 2016.

The four-time world champions have not won a single major tournament since winning the 2014 World Cup in Brazil where they handed a historic defeat on the hosts in the semifinals. Germany were without injured Bayern Munich midfielder Joshua Kimmich and RB Leipzig full-back Lukas Klostermann as well as Chelsea’s Kai Havertz, who tested positive for the coronavirus.