When Bundestrainer Jogi Löw prematurely let the cat out of the bag concerning Eintracht Frankfurt’s reappointing of Armin Veh as coach, it raised more than a few eyebrows.
They say you should never go back, but could the hiring of the experienced trainer to succeed the outgoing Thomas Schaaf prove a master-stroke for Die Adler?
The rehiring of Veh, 15 months after his surprise decision to leave the club, will have some Eintracht fans full of optimism over the prodigal son’s return, while other supporters might not be quite so quick to forgive their ex-trainer’s decision to jump ship at the end of the 2013/14 season.
Comments he made justifying his choice to leave at the time may also come back to haunt him. “You try everything and do everything possible to establish Eintracht in the Bundesliga. But there are also barriers. And these are not necessarily my goals” Veh said at the time.
Despite those remarks, the veteran Bundesliga coach still has plenty of allies at the club and his stock should remain high after his achievements between 2011 and 2014.
Veh led the club back to the Bundesliga at the first time of asking and then oversaw an attractive, attacking brand of football that remarkably achieved Europa League qualification.
A large part of the current squad are still ‘his players’ from before and it’s been reported that a number of the more influential members of the squad support him 100%- something that perhaps wasn’t the case under Thomas Schaaf.
Other options were allegedly considered with the names of Sascha Lewandowski, André Breitenreiter and Tayfun Korkut all in the mix at one stage or another, but none of these were deemed a guarantee to bring the stability Eintracht now need.
Despite the way the marriage ended last time, Veh is now deemed that man.
The 54-year-old clearly is not ready for an administrative role just yet and very much still sees himself as a Bundesliga trainer. He quite possibly also feels he has unfinished business at the Commerzbank Arena
Speaking after his appointment was made official he explained; “Eintracht was and is a special assignment for me. I’ll do everything I can to lead the team into a positive future.”
Meanwhile, Eintracht Frankfurt CEO Heribert Bruchhagen stated that: “We were in good negotiations with various candidates for the manager job. The crucial reasons for our decision are not only Armin Veh’s managerial and sportive skills but also his ability to play an integrative role in the club. On top of that he already knows the club inside out from his previous spell at Eintracht.”
Whether Veh can take things up where he left them and rediscover that winning formula remains to be seen. One thing is certain though- Eintracht fans will go into next season with a heightened sense of optimism. How long that optimism lasts depends very much on Herr Veh and how he performs during his second coming.
(Returning to a club is not unusual for Veh, who has had two separate coaching stints at both FC Augsburg and VfB Stuttgart, in addition to coaching current Bundesliga sides VfL Wolfsburg and Hamburger SV along with stops at SpVgg Greuther Fürth, Hansa Rostock and SSV Reutlingen 05. Veh, a former Bundesliga midfielder, began his coaching career in 1990).
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