Ranking Bundesliga Managers
The role of the manager in football is so critical to the team’s success as they must put together a game plan, formation and group of players to try and execute results. The job isn’t very secure as the Bundesliga has eight managers entering their first full season with their new club. I will be ranking the 18 current managers in the Bundesliga based on their coaching career, recent success and experience at top leagues like the Bundesliga.
18. Alfred Schreuder – 1899 Hoffenheim
The 46 year old is entering his first coaching job with Hoffenheim this season after spending the past four seasons as an assistant coach with Hoffenheim and Ajax. His only managerial experience was in 2014 when he was the manager of Twente in the Netherlands and the club finished with a 13-10-11 record. It’s really hard to place Schreuder on this list and by seasons end he could be one of the top managers but right now he is a wildcard.
17. Martin Schmidt – FC Augsburg
He has experience in the Bundesliga coaching Wolfsburg and Mainz 05 but on both occasions he found little success. He was the manager for Mainz 05 for two seasons from 2015 until 2017 with a combined record of 24-15-29 and while he did finish 6th during his first season, his second year was a disaster finishing 15th. In 2017 he became the manager of Wolfsburg and that was tough to watch as they finished 16th with a record of 6-15-13. He wasn’t involved in coaching last season however Augsburg decide to give him another shot but Schmidt hasn’t given me any reason to believe he will help turn that team around.
16. David Wagner – Schalke 04
Fans of the Premier League are familiar with David Wagner as the 47 year old is coming to the Bundesliga after coaching Huddersfield Town for four seasons. Last season the team finally reached the premier league but it wasn’t a season to remember as they finished dead last in the league. Huddersfield Town had a record of 3-7-28 last season under David Wagner and while he shouldn’t take all the blame, the team had one of the worst seasons in professional football last year. I’m surprised he was offered a job with Schalke but this is his opportunity to prove himself to fans.
15. Achim Beierlorzer – FC Koln
This is the first season for Achim Beierlorzer in the Bundesliga after spending a couple seasons with German team Jahn Regensburg as he accumulated a record of 27-19-25. The 51 year old helped his team finish 5th and 8th in 2.Bundesliga and he has an opportunity to work with a very talented group in Cologne.
14. Ante Covic – Hertha BSC
The 43 year old is entering his first Bundesliga season after spending parts of six years as an assistant manager and manager with Hertha BSC II. There is still a lot of uncertainty about the former Bundesliga midfielder but he does know the club well and he did open the season with a promising 2-2 draw against Bayern Munich.
13. Sandro Schwarz – Mainz 05
The 40 year old has been manager at Mainz 05 for two seasons with a record of 21-16-31 and Mainz have finished 14th and 12th in those two seasons. He was the manager for Mainz’s second team from 2015 until 2017 with a record of 23-19-34 and during his final season they were relegated after finishing 19th in the third league. I don’t think Schwarz is a very good coach but the Mainz organization must really have faith in him as he is entering his 5th season involved with the club.
12. Oliver Glasner – Wolfsburg
I’m most excited to see what Oliver Glasner can do with Wolfsburg this season as the 44 year old is entering his first year with the club after four successful seasons coaching LASK Link in Austria. His record during that time was 75-27-28 and Glasner finally gets an opportunity in a major league and I think he will really help Wolfsburg find success this season.
11. Christian Streich – SC Freiburg
He is turning into a coaching legend in Freiburg as he is entering his ninth season with the club as he holds an overall record of 106-78-102 during his tenure. What’s impressive about Streich is that Freiburg is the only club he has ever managed and he finds ways to get results as the club has only been relegated once during his time. My concern is that he hasn’t really helped the team over the past two seasons as they have finished 15th and 13th.
10. Peter Bosz – Bayer Leverkusen
The 55 year old took over near the end of last season for Leverkusen and he helped them finish strong with a 13-3-6 record during his time as coach. He has been a manager since 2002 with the majority of his career spend coaching in the Netherlands with Heracles Almelo, Vitesse and Ajax. His overall coaching record is 206-98-151 and he seems to be a good fit for Leverkusen but I want to see what he can do in a full season first.
9. Urs Fischer – Union Berlin
The 53 year old is entering his second season with Union Berlin after helping them get promoted into the Bundesliga with a 14-15-5 record last season. He was a coach in Switzerland since 2010 with Zurich, FC Thun and Basel as he has an overall record of 150-65-79. Last season was close as Union Berlin barely made promotion into the Bundesliga and this season will be huge for Urs Fischer's coaching future.
8. Florian Kohfeldt – Werder Bremen
Werder Bremen has really calmed down since the arrival of Florian Kohfeldt as the 36 year old has helped them escape relegation scares and into a more consistent pattern. He has lead them to 11th and 8th place finishes in his two seasons with a record of 29-19-19 and I think a lot of credit should be given to Florian in his first managerial job.
7. Niko Kovac – Bayern Munich
Bayern Munich have been blessed with great coaches over the past couple decades including Jupp Heynckes, Ottmar Hitzfeld, Felix Magath and Pep Guardiola but it’s a difficult team to coach. Since 2010 they have had eight coaching changes and Niko Kovac is under a lot of pressure to produce results. The 47 year old was briefly the Croatian national coach with a 10-5-4 record and he coached Eintracht Frankfurt for two seasons with a 38-20-33 record. Last season he helped Bayern Munich claim the title with a 24-6-4 record but with Borussia Dortmund on his tail it’s going to be a nerve-racking season for Kovac.
6. Marco Rose – Borussia Monchengladbach
I’m very excited to see Marco Rose’s first season in the Bundesliga as the 42 year old has done wonders with Red Bull Salzburg over the past six seasons. He coached their minor teams for four years with a record of 69-17-6 before coaching the main squad from 2017 until 2019 with a record of 82-22-10. Monchengladbach are expecting big things from Rose this season as the team is hoping to improve on a 5th place finish last season.
5. Steffen Baumgart – Paderborn 07
This manager has really done it all for Paderborn since taking over in 2017 as he has helped them reach the Bundesliga again after spending five seasons in lower divisions. The 47 year old took over for the team in 2017 as Paderborn was in 3.Liga and he helped them promote to 2.Bundesliga with a 25-8-5 record. The previous season under head coach Stefan Emmerling they finished 18th in 3.Liga, so jumping up 16 positions the next season under Baumgart is phenomenal. Last year in 2.Bundesliga he lead them to a 16-9-9 record for 2nd in the league and promotion to the Bundesliga. His overall record with the club is 41-17-14 and Steffen Baumgart is hoping they can remain in the Bundesliga for the first time ever.
4. Julian Nagelsmann – RB Leipzig
The youngest manager in the Bundesliga at 32 years old was offered the position for Red Bull Leipzig’s manager this offseason after three years as manager at Hoffenheim. He really helped Hoffenheim play at a high level with an overall record of 55-43-38 while finishing 4th, 3rd and 9th in the Bundesliga. Leipzig is coming off a very successful season last year and Julian Nagelsmann might be the missing piece to help them win the title.
3. Friedhelm Funkel – Fortuna Dusseldorf
The 65 year old has been manager at Dusseldorf since 2016 with a record of 51-25-43 and he has really helped bring Dusseldorf back in relevancy after spending the past two decades in the lower divisions. Last season Dusseldorf finished 10th in the Bundesliga with a 13-5-16 record and a lot of that success can be attributed to Funkel’s coaching. He has been a manager since 1991 with an overall record of 314-236-341 and he has coached fellow Bundesliga teams FC Koln (2002-2003), Eintracht Frankfurt (2004-2009) and Hertha BSC (2009-2010). He is very respected and well known among Bundesliga fans and players and what he has been able to accomplish over the past few seasons is fantastic.
2. Adi Hutter – Eintracht Frankfurt
The 48 year old is entering his second season with Frankfurt after helping them finish 7th with a 15-9-10 record. It was the teams best season in six years and he won coach of the year honours in the Bundesliga for his work last season with the club. He coached BSC Young Boys for three seasons in Switzerland with a 77-25-29 record and Red Bull Salzburg for roughly one season with a 35-8-11 record. His overall coaching record is 252-90-111 and he looks to help Frankfurt reach the top five of the Bundesliga this season for the first time in decades.
1. Lucien Favre – Borussia Dortmund
The 61 year old has been a manager for the club since last season where he helped Dortmund to a 23-7-4 record and only two points back of Bayern Munich for first. He has been a manager since 1991 while managing teams like Servette, Zurich, Hertha BSC, Nice and Borussia Monchengladbach. He has done a great job of motivating Dortmund and getting them to play at a top level every night and he is the top manager in the Bundesliga currently.