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March: Coronavirus brings the league to a halt

2020 review

Club 26.12.2020, 15:00

2020 was a year shaped by the coronavirus pandemic, although FCA still managed to have a successful year, securing their Bundesliga status for a tenth successive year. In March, Heiko Herrlich took over from Martin Schmidt, before the coronavirus pandemic brought the world to a standstill.

With just four points from the opening seven matches in the Rückrunde, FCA faced a trip to FC Bayern München. The underdogs made life hard for the record champions for long spells, even threatening a late upset, but were ultimately beaten 2-0. It was a third consecutive defeat for Augsburg. 

It proved to be the final match for Martin Schmidt. After six defeats in eight games, the club bosses and sporting director Stefan Reuter decided to part ways with the head coach and his assistant Stefan Sartori. "The situation is dangerous, we’ve been heading in the wrong direction for the last few months now," explained Reuter. "We have big concerns that we won’t achieve our goals, which forced us to make a change in the dugout."

Coronavirus puts the brakes on Herrlich’s revival

Heiko Herrlich, who played with Reuter at Dortmund and was most recently coached at Leverkusen, was announced as Schmidt’s successor. "He brings hunger, passion and a winning mentality," said Reuter as he announced his former teammate’s arrival. Herrlich was fully aware of the situation his new team found themselves in. "The team has been praised a lot recently. Perhaps the players have underestimated how dangerous the situation is," the former attacker told. "I need to communicate that message as soon as possible."

But the new head coach’s start was interrupted by the global coronavirus pandemic. The Deutsche Fußball-Liga (DFL) was forced to suspend the Bundesliga, as well as all youth leagues, indefinitely. Training was also put on hold, with the players required to keep themselves fit from home.

Video: Pressekonferenz: Heiko Herrlich neuer FCA-Cheftrainer


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