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Germany’s head football coach Joachim Löw to step down after nearly 15 years

Germany's World Cup-winning head coach Joachim Löw will step down after the European championships this July, the German FA confirmed Tuesday.

Germany's head football coach Joachim Löw to step down after nearly 15 years
Germany coach Joachim Löw is to step down. Photo: DPA

Löw will step down with a year left on his contract having signed up until the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar.

In a statement, Löw said he was “full of pride and enormous gratitude” after nearly 15 years as national coach and that he was “motivated” for his swansong at the European championships from June 11th-July 11th.

The 61-year-old nicknamed “Jogi” has been in charge of Germany since 2006 and lifted the 2014 World Cup in Brazil at the height of his tenure.

However, there have been calls for him to resign since Germany were hammered 6-0 by Spain in the Nations League last November.

That horror result followed two years of heavy criticism of Löw since Germany crashed out of the 2018 World Cup in Russia at the group stage.

Until that point, the Germans had reached at least the semi-finals of every tournament under Löw.

The fallout from the debacle in Russia tainted his legacy as he tried to rebuild the team.

His decision in March 2019 to end the international careers of veterans Thomas Mueller, Jerome Boateng and Mats Hummels soon backfired.

The assured performances of Mueller and Boateng in 2019/20 helped Bayern Munich win the Champions League title and led to Löw constantly having to defend his decision to sideline them from the national setup.

Recently Löw has hinted that he may recall the exiled trio for Germany’s World Cup qualifiers at the end of March.

His record as coach is an impressive 120 wins in 189 games with Germany as well as 38 draws and 31 defeats.

“I have great respect for Joachim Löw’s decision,” German FA (DFB) president Fritz Keller in a statement.

“The DFB knows what it has in ‘Jogi’, he is one of the greatest coaches in world football.

“Jogi Lôw has shaped German football like hardly anyone else over the years and has helped it achieve the highest international reputation.”

Another long-time Germany leader, Chancellor Angela Merkel, is also stepping down this year. Merkel, who has been Chancellor for over 15 years, will not stand for re-election in this year’s national elections on September 26th.

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FOOTBALL

British football teams allowed to skip Germany’s quarantine for Euro 2020

Germany's government announced on Tuesday it will allow England, Scotland and Wales to enter the country without quarantine to play at Euro 2020 despite a recent rise in cases linked to the Delta variant of Covid-19 in Britain.

British football teams allowed to skip Germany's quarantine for Euro 2020
One of the venues for Euro 2020 is in Munich. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sven Hoppe

The three teams could potentially reach the quarter-final held in Munich on July 2nd.

If that were the case, they would be exempt from the rule that travellers from the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland must currently observe a 14-day isolation period due to the virus strain of concern – Delta – first identified in India.

“The people accredited for the European football Championship are exempt from the quarantine obligation, even after arriving from an area impacted by a variant” Berlin said in a statement.

“This exemption concerns all the people who have been accredited by the organising committee for the preparation, participation, the holding and the follow-up of international sporting events,” it added.

The exemption does not include fans, who will be obliged to follow German government self-isolation rules.

Germany declared the UK a ‘virus variant area of concern’ on May 23rd due to rising cases linked to the Delta variant in parts of the country. 

READ ALSO: Germany makes UK ‘virus variant area of concern’: How does it affect you?

This reclassification came just seven days after the UK was put back on Germany’s list at the lowest risk level, and barely a month after it was taken off all risk lists completely.

The ban was put in place despite the UK’s relatively low Covid rates as a precautionary measure.

A general ban on entry is in place for people coming from countries on the ‘virus variant’ list – such as India and Brazil – the highest of Germany’s risk categories. 

There are some exceptions for entering from these countries – for example German residents and citizens. However, anyone who does enter from Germany is required to submit a Covid-19 test before boarding the flight and must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, regardless of whether they are fully vaccinated or not.

READ ALSO: Germany’s new relaxed quarantine and testing rules after travel

Euro 2020 starts on Friday as Italy host Turkey in Rome with the Bavarian city hosting three group games as well as the last-eight match.

Around 14,000 fans will be allowed into the Allianz Arena for the fixtures.

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