Leverkusen sack Bosz and cry out for Wolf

By Sports Desk March 23, 2021

Bayer Leverkusen have sacked head coach Peter Bosz and appointed former Stuttgart boss Hannes Wolf as his replacement until the end of this season.

A 4-0 win over Cologne in mid-December saw Leverkusen go top of the Bundesliga, but their form has collapsed since, with just four wins in their subsequent 18 matches in all competitions.

That prolonged slump has taken in a 6-3 aggregate defeat to Young Boys in the Europa League, which followed a humiliating exit from the DFB-Pokal at the hands of fourth-tier Rot-Weiss Essen in early February.

Following the 3-0 weekend defeat to Hertha Berlin, a result that left Leverkusen sixth in the table, Bosz expressed confidence that he would remain in his post.

However, the club's board had other ideas.

"In view of the development of football in recent weeks, we have come to the conclusion that the separation from Peter Bosz can no longer be avoided," said sporting director Rudi Voller in a statement. 

"The 3-0 defeat at Hertha on Sunday was unfortunately characteristic, our team has recently fallen into the same pattern over and over again. 

"We haven't been able to put an end to the repetitive mistakes and get back on the road to success. 

"After a factual and very open analysis of the sporting situation, we therefore agreed to make a change, despite the great appreciation for Peter Bosz."

Former Ajax head coach Bosz had done much to rehabilitate his reputation at Leverkusen having endured a nightmare half-season in charge of Borussia Dortmund in 2017-18.

A year later, in December 2018, he took over at the BayArena and inspired an upturn that resulted in Champions League qualification.

Leverkusen narrowly missed out on the top four last term, although they appeared to have put the loss of key man Kai Havertz to Chelsea behind them this time around before their post-Christmas disintegration.

Assistant coaches Hendrie Kruzen and Rob Maas and fitness coach Terry Peters have also been relieved of their duties, giving Wolf a surprise opportunity to prove himself again at Bundesliga level.

The 39-year-old was appointed Germany Under-18s coach after his dismissal by Belgian club Genk earlier this season.

Wolf amassed a 46 per cent win ratio when at Stuttgart between September 2016 and January 2018.

He then took charge of Hamburg during the 2018-19 season but was unable to lift the fallen giants out of 2. Bundesliga.

"I am very pleased with the trust that has been placed in me, because Bayer 04 is not just any club for me," Wolf said.

"Leverkusen has been one of the most attractive places in German football for many years. There is a highly ambitious environment here and a very talented, exciting team. 

"We all have opportunities to get into the European positions. It's up to us to get the maximum out of the remaining eight games."

Wolf will be assisted by veteran former Leverkusen player and coach Peter Hermann.

Related items

  • Transfer deadline day: Five standout deals as clubs went shopping for game-changers Transfer deadline day: Five standout deals as clubs went shopping for game-changers

    Chelsea completed an extraordinary spending spree by landing World Cup star Enzo Fernandez from Benfica, the biggest deal of transfer deadline day.

    It was Premier League clubs that featured front and centre as big-name players found new homes on Tuesday, with Manchester United, Arsenal and Manchester City kept busy.

    Deals struck on this day can be born of desperation; however, if the right player becomes available, those that jump at the opportunity to reinforce might be thankful they took that choice come May.

    Here Stats Perform assesses five deals that went through and could prove hugely significant come the season's end.

    Enzo Fernandez: Benfica to Chelsea, £106.8million

    A World Cup wonder for Argentina, Fernandez's stock soared over four weeks in Qatar, to the point he became linked to the wealthiest clubs in Europe.

    It was Chelsea owner Todd Boehly who lasted the distance in the race for his signature, adding Fernandez to the previous window deals for Mykhaylo Mudryk, Benoit Badiashile, Andrey Santos, David Datro Fofana, Joao Felix, Noni Madueke and Malo Gusto.

    Fernandez has only played half a season in Europe after moving to Benfica from River Plate, so there is an element of risk in Chelsea's investment, regardless of his national team performances alongside Lionel Messi and co.

    He has played five Champions League group games, and the 22-year-old has looked the part, with his arrival handing Graham Potter another expensive plaything. This means there can be no excuses now for the head coach as he looks to turn the Blues into a winning machine.

    Marcel Sabitzer: Bayern Munich to Manchester United (loan)

    Bayern Munich decided they could afford to part company with Sabitzer, with the former RB Leipzig midfielder jetting out to secure a move to Manchester United, swapping one European giant for another.

    It was reported Erik ten Hag fancied Ryan Gravenberch, his former Ajax player, but Bayern were said to have resisted that interest and instead allowed United to take Austria international Sabitzer.

    He emerged as a surprising spare part for Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann, with Sabitzer having featured in 23 games for the Bundesliga leaders this season, albeit starting only 11 times.

    Ten Hag will certainly like the fact Sabitzer has a duel success rate of 58.77 per cent – the highest of his career – this season.

    He is not a like-for-like replacement for the injured Christian Eriksen, but Sabitzer brings his own qualities, will want to prove a point, and should not let United down over the coming four months.

    Jorginho: Chelsea to Arsenal, £12million

    Arsenal wanted Moises Caicedo and were prepared to pay a king's ransom for the Brighton and Hove Albion midfielder. They settled for Jorginho, a Euro 2020 champion with Italy and Champions League winner with Chelsea, paying a small fraction of the fee they would have had to spend on Caicedo.

    A deal worth around £12million looks sensible business, and Jorginho makes the jump from 10th-placed Chelsea to the table-topping Gunners, seeking the first domestic league title of his career.

    He played 25 games this season for the Blues, scoring three penalties but not managing any goals other than those spot-kicks, nor any assists.

    Some Arsenal fans have grumbled over the signing, but Jorginho brings defensive qualities and experience of winning, which for Arsenal in recent years has been in short supply.

    Joao Cancelo: Manchester City to Bayern Munich (loan with option to buy)

    Bayern brought in goalkeeper Yann Sommer earlier in the window after Manuel Neuer suffered a season-ending broken leg. That was a deal that many saw coming, but the move for Cancelo came out of the sky blue, reportedly after a disagreement with Pep Guardiola saw City happy to offload the full-back.

    It went through on Tuesday, opening up the possibility of Cancelo being a Premier League and Bundesliga winner in the same season.

    He looks set to feature at right-back for Bayern, with Alphonso Davies featuring on the left. It means Bayern will have a pair of attacking full-backs that will put the fear up opponents.

    With Bayern in a slump, drawing their past three Bundesliga games, it felt important for there to be a new face coming in. Cancelo, until very recently a favourite of Guardiola, is used to winning things with City so should fit in well at Sabener Strasse.

    Pedro Porro: Sporting CP to Tottenham (loan with obligation to buy)

    Three and a half years since he joined Manchester City, Porro should finally make his debut in English football after being recruited to fill the right-back role for Antonio Conte at Spurs.

    This has the makings of a masterstroke signing, with Spain international Porro having caught Spurs' eye in the Champions League group stage earlier this season. He previously played for Real Valladolid while farmed out on loan from City, for whom he never played a competitive senior game.

    He represents an upgrade on Matt Doherty, who was released to join Atletico Madrid, and may have the edge on Emerson Royal, with Conte bringing in a player with serious defensive and attacking qualities.

    Among defenders with 10 or more appearances and at least 10 tackles, Porro's 78.95 per cent tackle success rate ranks as the sixth-best in the Portuguese Primeira Liga this season.

    Meanwhile, only one defender, Benfica's Alejandro Grimaldo, has created more chances than Porro's 34 from 14 games, which have brought him six assists.

    Porro ranks second among defenders in the Portuguese top flight for the most crosses played too, with 108 to Grimaldo's 116. Significantly, though, Porro has played 526 minutes fewer than Grimaldo, illustrating how effective the Spurs new boy has been when on the pitch.

  • Man Utd sign Sabitzer on loan from Bayern Man Utd sign Sabitzer on loan from Bayern

    Manchester United have signed Marcel Sabitzer on loan from Bayern Munich for the remainder of the season.

    The 28-year-old Austria international emerged as a deadline day target for Erik ten Hag's side following an injury to Christian Eriksen that will leave the Denmark international out of action until April.

    Ten Hag told reporters on Tuesday that United did not require a late addition to fill the void left by Eriksen.

    However, the availability of Sabitzer changed that approach and he has now completed a move to Old Trafford, bolstering the squad's midfield options for the remainder of the season as they battle on four fronts.

    United confirmed Sabitzer's arrival on their official website a little over an hour after Tuesday's transfer deadline, having submitted the relevant paper work in time.

    "Sometimes in life you have to make quick and important decisions," Sabizter said. "From the moment I heard about this opportunity I knew it was right for me. I am a competitive player; I want to win and help the club achieve its aims this season. 

    "I feel that I am at my peak as a player, and that I can contribute a lot of experience and energy to the squad. I am excited to start with my new team-mates and manager and to show my qualities to Manchester United fans."

     

    United director John Murtough added: "Marcel is a player that we have watched for a long time. The opportunity arose quickly, and we knew that he was someone with the ability and character to make an impact.

    "He adds further quality to our squad and experience to the dressing room, and all of us are pleased to be welcoming him to Manchester United."

    Sabitzer joined Bayern from Bundesliga rivals RB Leipzig ahead of the 2021-22 season but has found regular opportunities difficult to come by.

    While he has made 40 appearances for the Bundesliga champions, just 15 of those have been as a starter.

    Sabitzer has not been signed in time for the second leg of United's EFL Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest on Wednesday, but he could make his debut in the Premier League clash against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

  • BREAKING NEWS: Man Utd sign Sabitzer on loan from Bayern BREAKING NEWS: Man Utd sign Sabitzer on loan from Bayern

    Manchester United have signed Marcel Sabitzer on loan from Bayern Munich for the remainder of the season.

    The 28-year-old Austria international emerged as a deadline day target for Erik ten Hag's side following an injury to Christian Eriksen that will leave the Denmark international out of action until April.

    Ten Hag told reporters on Tuesday that United did not require a late addition to fill the void left by Eriksen.

    However, the availability of Sabitzer changed that approach and he has now completed a move to Old Trafford, bolstering the squad's midfield options for the remainder of the season.

    United confirmed Sabitzer's arrival on their official website a little over an hour after Tuesday's transfer deadline, having submitted the relevant paper work in time.

    "Sometimes in life you have to make quick and important decisions," Sabizter said. "From the moment I heard about this opportunity I knew it was right for me. I am a competitive player; I want to win and help the club achieve its aims this season. 

    "I feel that I am at my peak as a player, and that I can contribute a lot of experience and energy to the squad. I am excited to start with my new team-mates and manager and to show my qualities to Manchester United fans."

    Sabitzer joined Bayern from Bundesliga rivals RB Leipzig ahead of the 2021-22 season but has found regular opportunities difficult to come by.

    While he has made 40 appearances for the Bundesliga champions, just 15 of those have been as a starter.

    Sabitzer has not been signed in time for the second leg of United's EFL Cup semi-final against Nottingham Forest on Wednesday, but he could make his debut in the Premier League clash against Crystal Palace on Saturday.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.