What a difference 48 hours can make. Rudi Völler was already considered a legend in the eyes of the German people. The former German international answered his country’s calls following the dismissal of Hansi Flick and has already managed to steady the ship and beat France 2-1 in front of a home crowd.
Völler made four changes to the side that lost to Japan 4-1 just a few days ago, and Die Mannschaft looked a different beast. In the lead after four minutes, it was possibly the most convincing 45 minutes of football that Germany has played in well over a year.
Despite the immediate impact and the thousands of fans chanting his name in the stadium, Völler has been adamant that it’s not in his plans to continue as head coach heading into Euro 2024.
“Yes, for me it was a one-off. That was very clear to me. The result doesn’t change anything. It was a very tiring, very stressful few days. The whole thing was very strenuous. I had brief contact with the president and with Aki Watzke. We will get together over the next few days. My wish is that we can introduce the new coach by the next international break,” explained the 63-year-old.
That may be the case, but it’s clear that Völler is capable of getting a tune out of this current crop of German talent. Possibly considered more of a motivator than Flick, Völler carries a certain presence with him. Simply put, when the man speaks, you listen.
You could possibly draw parallels between the current situation Die Mannschaft finds themselves in and the 2002 World Cup.
Having spoken to fans who remember the tournament well, they describe the country as not having much optimism. The squad did include a variety of talents, but no one was expecting for Germany to really go far in the tournament.
However, galvanised under Völler, Germany made it all the way to the final but ultimately came up short against an unbelievable Brazil side.
Perhaps the football romantics of German football have one eye on the past and the current situation they see before them. In their eyes, it’s a fairytale waiting to be written should Völler continue as coach.
The fans would be on board and it appears the team would be as well. It’s just whether Völler himself has it in him.
GGFN | Jamie Allen