Ulrich Forte joins Arminia Bielefeld after over 20 years as a coach in Switzerland. - © Imago
Ulrich Forte joins Arminia Bielefeld after over 20 years as a coach in Switzerland. - © Imago

Arminia Bielefeld appoint Ulrich Forte as new head coach


Arminia Bielefeld have turned to Ulrich Forte after being relegated from the Bundesliga at the end of 2021/22, appointing the Italian-Swiss coach on a two-year contract until 30 June 2024.

Forte joins Arminia after steering Yverdon Sport FC to a second successive season of Swiss Challenge League football (Switzerland's second tier). The 48-year-old previously held the position of head coach at FC Wil, St. Gallen, Grasshoppers, Young Boys and FC Zurich, winning two Swiss Cups.

"We're really looking forward to working with Uli," commented Samir Arabi, Bielefeld's director of sport. "He really inpressed us in our talks with his impassioned manner, positive energy and his wealth of experience. Together we want to build a new foundation in Bundesliga 2 to help stabilise and develop the team."

Arminia were promoted to the Bundesliga as Bundesliga 2 champions in 2020, after an 11-year absence from the German top flight. They ended their first season back in the Bundesliga in 15th place, but were relegated automatically after finishing second bottom in 2021/22.

Forte replaces Frank Kramer, who took over from promotion-winning coach Uwe Neuhaus in March 2021 before being dismissed with four matches of the 2021/22 campaign remaining. Goalkeeping coach Marco Kostmann was placed in temporary charge, unable to break a winless run that stretches back to 19 February 2022.

"I can't wait for the challenge of coaching Arminia in Bundesliga 2," enthused Forte. "German football was always a dream of mine. Now it's finally being realised at a big Traditionsverein like Bielefeld."