After head coach Martin Schmidt and assistant manager Stefan Sartori parted company with FC Augsburg on Monday, FCA presented new manager Heiko Herrlich on Tuesday as Schmidt’s replacement. In the morning press conference, FCA sporting director Stefan Reuter spoke about the background behind the decision, as well as...
…the departures of Martin Schmidt and Stefan Sartori. “I would like to thank the both of them. They tried to turn things around and get back on track right until the very end. We worked closely together for a year with a lot of mutual trust between us. Both of them were naturally disappointed that they were unable to turn the situation around themselves. In regard to the recent decision, they fully understand the circumstances and wish FCA every success in our goal of staying in the division.
...the developments of the recent weeks: “We were greatly concerned that we were in danger of not achieving our goal. The team has been going in the wrong direction for several months. This alarming situation prompted us to make a change at the managerial level. We have spent a lot of time analysing the defeats and how we can get back to winning ways.”
...dealing with defeats: “We hoped that we could start turning the corner in Munich, and with a bit more luck and bravery on Sunday, we could have gotten something from that game. We’ve received a lot of praise in recent months, but we can never be satisfied with defeat and we need to get points on the board to achieve our goals for the season. That is why together we decided that the time to make a change was after that game.”
Heiko Herrlich’s last managerial position was coach of Bayer Leverkusen from 2017 to 2018. Before that the 48-year-old led SSV Jahn Regensburg to the 2.Bundesliga after two successive promotions. “He will bring hunger, passion and a winning mentality,” said Reuter of the new FCA head coach, who spent nine years with Borussia Dortmund when he was a player. “Heiko has accumulated a great deal of experience over the years as both a coach and a player.”
Herrlich spoke at the press conference about…
…the current situation: “The club and the team are in a difficult position, which one or more of the players may be unaware of. The team has been praised, but maybe some of the players have underestimated how dangerous the club’s situation is. I have to make this clear to the team as fast as possible. It is important that we work together as a unit and pick up points very quickly.”
...the upcoming days: “I will start to form a detailed picture and have a lot of conversations within the club. We need to focus on working together as a unit so we get that killer instinct back on the pitch and the strength of the team spurs on the supporters. We have to get back to that point.”
…his philosophy: “I will try and incorporate each element in order to succeed. My teams have shown their desire to play with passion and with bite, grouped together by a desire not only to play with, but for each other.”