Joachim Low – Out of the shadows and into the light
Joachim Low (47) has made it: he is one of Germany’s best-loved figures and most highly sought-after coaches and has a great future ahead of him as head coach of the German national team. However, it was not that long ago that the man they call Jogi was in danger of vanishing into obscurity. After his sacking by Austria Vienna in 2004, no attractive offers were forthcoming and it was not until Jurgen Klinsmann offered him a role as assistant coach that the man from the Black Forest’s career took off again. Earlier in his coaching career, Low had been so successful as caretaker manager of Stuttgart that his position was made permanent. With the help of the “magic triangle” formed by Giovane Elber, Krassimir Balakov and Fredi Bobic, he went on to lead Stuttgart to victory in the German cup and a place in the Cup Winners’ Cup final. From the very beginning, Low has advocated free-flowing attacking football, a philosophy to which he has remained true up to the present day. He learnt his trade from Swiss coach Urs Siegenthaler, who now works as his right-hand man in the German national team set-up. “I am very impressed with Urs’ technical qualities. He has really opened my eyes to a lot of things,” says Low, whose own playing career never truly fulfilled its potential. Nevertheless, he wrote himself into the record books of his local team, Freiburg, his 81 goals making him the highest scorer in the club’s history.