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Germany - Joachim Löw
Joachim Löw is the manager of the German national football team and has been since 2006. This 15 year tenure makes him one of the longest serving coaches in international football. Given his superb record with his side, it is unsurprising he has maintained the backing of the German Football Association for so long.
Before moving into international management, Löw was not a superstar on the world football stage. While he had enjoyed a respectable career as a player and had taken charge of many club sides over a decade long managerial career, his resume was far from illustrious. His career trajectory has taken an unusual trajectory. He began his footballing life with SC Freiburg in 1978 when he was 18. After being given his first professional contract, Löw went on to play 71 times for the West German club, scoring 18 goals from his favoured central attacking-midfield position.
After two relatively successful seasons he caught the attention of VfB Stuttgart, one of the best teams in Germany at the time. In his one and only season with the club however, he was unable to nail down a spot in the starting 11 and made just four appearances in total and failing to score a goal.
It was best for all parties, therefore, that Löw left the club. He moved to Eintracht Frankfurt in time for the start of the 1981/1982 season and played 24 times and scored five goals in his single season for the club. He returned to SC Freiburg the following season where he had another successful spell, scoring 25 times in 65 league starts. He moved on again in 1985, to Karlsrusher SC where he played 24 times and score twice.
Bizarrely, he returned to SC Freiburg for a third time in 1985. It would turn out to be his longest stint with the club as he played 116 times and scored 38 goals over a four year period. This would prove his last major club in football as he spent the remaining years of his career in Germany's lower leagues before hanging up his boots to focus on management in 1995.
It was in the coaching side of the game that Löw made a real name for himself. He had successful spells Stuttgart, Tirol Innsbruck and Austria Vien. With Stuttgart, Löw won the DFB-Pokal in 1996/1997 and finished runner-up in the UEFA Cup Winners Cup in 1997/1998 and the DFB-Ligapokal in 1997. With Austrian team Tirol Innsbruck, Löw won the oly league title of his coaching career: the Austrian Football Bundesliga in 2001/2002. Two years later, still in Austria, he oversaw the Austria Wien side that triumphed in the Austrian Super Cup.
On 9 March 2021, Löw announced that he would step down from his role as Germany manager following the upcoming Euro 2020.