Bayern Munich's Thomas Tuchel and Edin Terzic of Borussia Dortmund are back - and of course Christian Streich is still there at Freiburg - but there's a couple of new faces on the Bundesliga benches this coming season. Find out more about the coaches of each team in 2023/24...
A familiar face returned to Bundesliga shores in March 2023 when former Dortmund and Mainz boss Tuchel replaced Julian Nagelsmann in the Bayern hotseat. Following successful stints at Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea, with whom he won the 2021 UEFA Champions League, Tuchel arrived at the Allianz Arena aiming to lead the Reds to the third treble in the club's history. Although that proved to be beyond reach, Tuchel did get his hands on a first Bundesliga title and Bayern's 11th in a row on a dramatic final-day of the season, and with a summer of preparation under his belt, he will no doubt be aiming even higher this term.
The 40-year-old led Dortmund to the 2020/21 DFB Cup as caretaker boss, having served as assistant to predecessor Lucien Favre, and he returned to the hotseat at the Signal Iduna Park after the club decided to part ways with Marco Rose after just one season. A Dortmund fan who has been in the crowd for their previous triumphs down the years, Terzic worked his way through the coaching ranks at Borussia, either side of spells as assistant to Slaven Bilic at Besiktas and West Ham United, and he took the Black & Yellows closer than anybody to ending Bayern's hegemony last term, but for final-day heartbreak. Terzic's eyes will be well and truly trained on the prize this term, with that bitter disappointment still very much fresh in the mind.
Watch: Tearful Terzic was cheered on by the Yellow Wall after title defeat
Rose took charge at hometown club Leipzig early last season after the dismissal of Domenico Tedesco. The 46-year-old had a point to prove after lasting just 12 months at Dortmund, and beat his former side in his first game in charge. An 18-match unbeaten run, including the famous scalp of Real Madrid, saw Die Roten Bullen pull back into European contention and also advance in the DFB Cup, where Leipzig ultimately retained their title from 2021/22 with victory over Eintracht Frankfurt in Berlin. Rose also ensured they will be in the Champions League again this season, but a sustained challenge for the Bundesliga crown will certainly be one of the objectives at the Red Bull Arena this time around.
Watch: How Rose transformed Leipzig's season
Fischer remains the only person to lead Union in the Bundesliga, improving each year since guiding them to promotion in 2019 and engraving his name both in the club's and the league's history books last term by guiding them into the UEFA Champions League. The Swiss tactician masterminded Die Eisernen’s finishes in 11th, seven, fifth and that historic fourth place last season, which saw them qualify for European football's elite club competition for the first time ever. His work at the Stadion An der Alten Försterei has been little short of remarkable for a club that was in the fourth tier just over a decade ago and was not even in the top flight of the East German league system at the time of reunification. Although they will move to Berlin's Olympiastadion for their European encounters, expect the stadium to be sold out when some of Europe's most illustrious names discover the miracle that Fischer - a keen angler who likes to take to the lakes around Berlin, when the busy fixture list allows - has pieced together.
Watch: Fischer and Union make history
The only person older than Fischer in the Bundesliga is the Freiburg institution that is Streich. The 58-year-old has been at the helm in the Black Forest for over 11 years and has made history as their coach with the most wins and also the first to guide them to a DFB Cup final, where they came up narrowly short against Leipzig in 2021/22. He also took Freiburg to within three points of a historic Champions League qualification last term, with his side occupying that illustrious fourth spot for a large part of the final day of the season before Union turned things around to snatch it from them. Nevertheless, it was the second close call with Champions League football, so could it be a case of third time lucky this term?
After a disappointing start to the season under previous boss Gerardo Seoane, former Bayern midfielder Alonso was appointed as Leverkusen manager. The Spaniard's experience in the dugout remains limited, with this just his second job after three years at the helm of Real Sociedad's B team, but, while there have already been ups and down for him and his team during his stint at the BayArena, enough positives suggest he can provide some success. Having played under the likes of Rafael Benitez, Jose Mourinho, Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti, the 41-year-old has an idea of what it takes to coach a winning team, and his stock is certainly rising.
After sustained success in Luxembourg, 42-year-old Toppmöller moved to Leipzig to be part of Julian Nagelsmann's coaching staff and he also followed him to Munich in 2021, deputising for him in a UEFA Champions League win in Benfica and a Bundesliga victory over Hoffenheim as illness kept Nagelsmann off the touchline for a brief spell. The son of former Bayer Leverkusen coach Klaus Toppmöller, who famously led Die Werkself into the final of the UEFA Champions League in 2002, Dino followed Nagelsmann out the door at Bayern, but is now back in the saddle for his first solo ride at the helm of a Bundesliga club, tasked with getting Frankfurt back onto the top European stage.
Prior to Oliver Glasner's UEFA Europa League success, the last coach to win a trophy with Frankfurt was Kovac, who took charge at Wolfsburg in summer 2022, seven years after the Wolves' last piece of silverware. The 51-year-old returned to Germany after 18 months in French football with Monaco, where he earned praise for his style and also did the double over Paris Saint-Germain in 2020/21. The Berlin-born ex-Croatia international's last Bundesliga game prior to his Monegasque adventure came in November 2019 as his Bayern team were beaten 5-1 in Frankfurt, but only after he had become the first person to win the Bundesliga and DFB Cup double both as a player and a coach when he guided Bayern to glory in his first season. He led the Wolves to within a point of European qualification last term and will be intent on taking them back around the continent in 2024.
The Dane took over midway through 2020/21 with Mainz looking doomed on six points from 14 games, but he turned things around in style to save them and finish 12th with 39. He then led them to eighth with the club’s fourth-best points haul in their Bundesliga history, built largely on remarkable home form that saw them concede just 11 times in 17 games at the Mewa Arena – four fewer than any other team on home soil. Despite dropping one position to ninth last term, albeit with the same number of points (46), Svensson has brought some stability to Mainz and, whisper it quietly, could even follow in the illustrious footsteps of Tuchel and Jürgen Klopp by taking the 05ers on a European journey sometime soon.
Borussia Mönchengladbach: Gerardo Seoane
Seoane, 44, has signed a three-year contract with Gladbach following the departure of Daniel Farke, returning for his first coaching role since departing Bundesliga rivals Bayer Leverkusen, where he held the reins from July 2021 until October 2022. After a playing career spent largely in his native Switzerland, Seoane cut his teeth as a coach at Luzern before taking over Young Boys of Berne in 2018, winning three consecutive Swiss Super League titles as well as the domestic cup in 2019/20. At Leverkusen he guided Die Werkself to third place in his maiden Bundesliga campaign in 2021/22 as well as the round of 16 in the UEFA Europa League, but he was relieved of his duties after Matchday 8 in 2022/23 following five defeats, two draws and just one win.
The 51-year-old has brought life back to Effzeh since joining from Paderborn for the 2021/22 campaign, taking a team that had only survived relegation via the promotion/relegation play-off to one that finished a comfortable seventh, qualifying for continental football in the process. He has managed to instil a swashbuckling style of play as well as a fearless, exciting approach, while his touchline attire has been just as popular with the fans: Baumgart’s signature flat cap and polo shirt has become one of the most popular looks at Karneval. Unfortunately for Cologne, they were unable to progress beyond the group stages of the UEFA Europa Conference League but, while the team failed to reach the same heights as last term, the eccentric boss remains a fan favourite and penned a new deal at the end of 2022/23.
Watch: Getting to know Cologne coach Steffen Baumgart
Hoffenheim was Matarazzo's second stop of the 2022/23 season, having been relieved of his duties by Stuttgart in October. The American was tasked with keeping them amongst the elite, and he succeeded quite comfortably. In his previous job, he initially displayed his coaching and tactical ability, leading Stuttgart to a top-half finish in their first season back in the Bundesliga with an exciting style, but survival in 2021/22 was only confirmed in the last minute of Matchday 34. He is no stranger to Sinsheim, though, having been on Nagelsmann's coaching staff, including one year as assistant, during the former Bayern man's three years at the club.
Ole’s been at the wheel at Werder since November 2021 – having been Holstein Kiel boss until September – taking over with the relegated northern giants down in 10th after 15 games. The 35-year-old then won 28 of a possible 30 points from his first 10 matches to put Bremen in pole position for promotion. Consistent team selection saw him finish the Bundesliga 2 campaign with a record of 13 wins, four draws and two defeats at the helm at the Weserstadion, ensuring the four-time Bundesliga champions returned to the big time at the first attempt. Thanks in no small part to the free-scoring Niclas Füllkrug, his first season in the Bundesliga ended in comfortable survival and a second shot at the division in 2023/24 for the top flight's current youngest boss.
Prior to his arrival in Bochum halfway through last season, Letsch was an unknown quantity in German football, having instead spent the majority of his top-level coaching career in Austria and the Netherlands, with Vitesse Arnhem. He led the latter to a fourth-place Eredivisie finish in 2021/22 as well as the Dutch Cup final, proving his credentials. There has been little to shout about for him at the Vonovia Ruhrstadion, but many expected Bochum to be involved in a scrap towards the bottom of the table, so keeping them in the division saw him reach his objective, with the next aim to establish the Ruhr club in the top flight with fewer flirtations with the drop.
The 39-year-old joined Augsburg from the Dortmund reserves last summer, having impressed in the lower leagues. Knee problems forced the amateur midfielder to retire in 2014 at promoted fifth-tier side Drochtersen/Assel. He was named the new coach shortly after, creating an attacking team that earned promotion to the fourth level in two years and narrowly lost 1-0 to Gladbach in the 2016/17 DFB Cup. He had to change his style at Rödinghausen, who he joined in 2018, stabilising the team defensively before focusing on their attacking play. He took the Regionalliga West side to the second round of the cup, again suffering a narrow defeat to Bundesliga opposition, this time Bayern (2-1). He kept the team at the top end of the table for two seasons before being brought to Dortmund in 2020, getting the reserves promoted to the 3. Liga in his first campaign, then leading them to a comfortable ninth before Augsburg came calling. Injuries didn't help matters last term, but Maaßen showed his tactical flexibility in always getting a competitive team out there.
If the surname sounds familiar to you it's likely because football is the Hoeneß family business: Sebastian is the son of former Germany international Dieter, and nephew of former Bayern president Uli. The 41-year-old became Stuttgart's third coach of the 2022/23 season when he followed on from Matarazzo and Bruno Labaddia, leading them to survival with a convincing 6-1 aggregate victory over Hamburg in the play-off. That earned him an opportunity to lead the Swabians into the new season - one that they hope will be less hair-raising than the last.
Watch: Hoeneß and Stuttgart beat HSV over two legs to stay up
Heidenheim: Frank Schmidt
There can be little doubt about the man who has had the biggest influence on Heidenheim's rags-to-riches rise. Schmidt took the reins of Heidenhem shortly after its restructuring in 2007 and has hardly looked back, masterminding the aforementioned promotions and guiding his side to five Württemberg Cup victories. He also led them to the quarter-finals of the 2018/19 DFB Cup, where they came close to a stunning upset against eventual winners Bayern Munich in a barnstorming nine-goal thriller. Nearly 16 years later, he is still in the Heidenheim hotseat, and boasts the unofficial title of the longest-serving current coach in German professional football, ahead of Freiburg's Streich (appointed in December 2011). He will claim the all-time honour from Freiburg's Volker Finke just weeks after taking charge of his first-ever Bundesliga match. Club CEO Holger Sanwald has even joked that Schmidt can have "a lifetime contract" - even more so after guiding the club to the top flight for the first time in their history last term.
Watch: Frank Schmidt's tear-jerking Heidenheim fairy tale
Darmstadt: Torsten Lieberknecht
A former teammate and roommate of Klopp at Mainz, 49-year-old Lieberknecht is in regular contact with the UEFA Champions League-winning coach, exchanging ideas over squad management and tactics. Lieberknecht has a track record of success too. He took Eintracht Braunschweig from the third division to the Bundesliga - marking a return to the top flight after a 28-year wait - in the space of five seasons. Though a subsequent spell at Duisburg did not work out as well, ending with his departure in November 2020, it seems he and Darmstadt were made for each other as he led them back into the big time last term, and will look to keep them there this season.
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