Stuttgart appoint Thomas Hitzlsperger as sporting director

By Sports Desk February 12, 2019

Stuttgart have announced the departure of sporting director Michael Reschke, with former player Thomas Hitzlsperger taking over in the role.

Former Germany international Hitzlsperger played for the Bundesliga side between 2005 and 2010, with his return announced on Tuesday.

Stuttgart are battling relegation from the Bundesliga and Hitzlsperger hopes to make a positive impression on his arrival.

"Following the end of my playing career, I've spent the past two-and-a-half-years gaining management experience and making valuable contacts," he told the club's website.

"Now, in my new role as sporting director, I will be putting all my efforts into keeping VfB [Stuttgart] in the Bundesliga and ensuring this talented team has a successful future.

"I thank our president and the supervisory board for the faith they've placed in me and I'm very much looking forward to this great challenge."

President Wolfgang Dietrich added: "In Thomas we're gaining an expert who brings both football expertise from his own recent playing career as well as the necessary leadership qualities.

"He's shown both in recent years in various functions at VfB Stuttgart. I'm delighted that he immediately showed the willingness to take on the role of sporting director."

Stuttgart appointed Markus Weinzierl as head coach in October following the sacking of Tayfun Korkut after he oversaw a run of one win in seven league matches.

Related items

  • Who is Luka Jovic? The Bundesliga goal machine linked with Barcelona Who is Luka Jovic? The Bundesliga goal machine linked with Barcelona

    Luka Jovic is the Bundesliga's most prolific forward this season and his performances for Eintracht Frankfurt have not gone unnoticed.     

    With a league-high 14 goals and 20 in all competitions, Jovic has been linked with Barcelona and reports have even gone as far to say the 21-year-old already has a personal agreement to join the LaLiga champions.

    A product of Serbian giants Red Star Belgrade, Jovic – like many before him – was lured away from the capital by Benfica in 2016. He only made four appearances at Estadio da Luz, eventually moving to Frankfurt on a two-year loan deal.

    The transfer included an option to buy and Frankfurt's decision to invest in Jovic has proved to be a masterstroke when you consider the reported fee stands at €7million and they could be set to receive in excess of €40m for the Serbia international.

    Jovic's value has soared this season following an eight-goal Bundesliga campaign in 2017-18.

    Through 22 rounds this term, Jovic has more league goals than Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski (13), Borussia Dortmund captain Marco Reus (13) and Paco Alcacer (12).

    Jovic, who has already made history after becoming the youngest player to score five goals in a Bundesliga match during October's 7-1 rout of Fortuna Dusseldorf, has a better minutes-to-goal ratio (94) and shot conversion rate (31.82) than Lewandowski (144.46 and 21.31) and Thomas Muller (376.5 and 14.29), per Opta data.

    His shooting accuracy (54.55) is also far superior to Lewandowski (39.34), while Jovic has also converted eight "big chances" and created 16 opportunities - making him a versatile threat up front.

    With another six goals en route to the Europa League last 16, in-demand Jovic is seen as the ideal successor to Luis Suarez at Camp Nou. And as the goals continue to flow, Barca may be set for a transfer war amid interest from rivals Real Madrid and Chelsea.

  • City out to make history against Chelsea - Silva City out to make history against Chelsea - Silva

    Bernardo Silva believes Manchester City will take a significant stride towards becoming serial winners if they overcome Chelsea in the EFL Cup final on Sunday.

    City won the trophy last season after beating Arsenal 3-0 in the final, as well as getting their hands on a third Premier League title.

    The club are yet to retain a trophy in their history – something Silva wants to see corrected against Maurizio Sarri's side at Wembley.

    "It would mean a lot for the history of the club," he said.

    "That is one of our main goals: not only winning it once but keep winning and winning.

    "We know we have the squad to do that but our opponents are very strong and it won't be an easy job."

    City thumped Chelsea in the Premier League 6-0 less than a fortnight ago, but Silva insists it will be a far tougher game this time around.

    "We should forget that match because it won't happen again," he added.

    "We are not expecting the same result. We are playing against one of the best sides in the world, even though lately their results are not the best for them.

    "Against those kind of players you can never relax and if you give them time to think, time to play and time to decide [what to do], they will destroy you. So, we have to play with the same intensity."

  • FA charge Millwall over racist chanting FA charge Millwall over racist chanting

    Millwall have been charged with failing to control spectactors by the Football Association after instances of alleged racist chanting during their FA Cup victory against Everton.

    Footage posted on social media appeared to show a section of the club's supporters taunting away fans by using a derogatory term about the Pakistani community.

    The FA launched an investigation into the incident and confirmed on Thursday the Championship side have now been charged.

    "Millwall FC has been charged with a breach of FA Rule E20," said an FA statement.

    "It is alleged the club failed to ensure its spectators conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and refrained from using abusive and/or insulting words, which included a reference to race and/or ethnic origin, during the FA Cup tie against Everton on January 26."

    Following the game, which Millwall won 3-2 to stay on course for a quarter-final at home to Brighton and Hove Albion, the club condemned the alleged racist abuse as "abhorrent".

    "Millwall Football Club is aware of, and extremely disappointed by, a video circulating online displaying alleged racist chanting during Saturday's victory over Everton," a Millwall statement read.

    "The club will, as is commonplace following such incidents, work with all relevant authorities during investigations into the matter and look to identify individuals involved. Anyone identified and guilty of such abuse will be banned from The Den for life."

    Before the match, Everton fan Jay Burns was attacked and suffered a facial gash that required 25 stitches.

    Police arrested and bailed a 27-year-old man on suspicion of wounding with intent, attempted grievous bodily harm and violent disorder.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.