Jurgen the German tops Villa wish list
Published 23:00 28/08/10 By Ralph Ellis
Jurgen Klinsmann is top of Aston Villa’s wish list as their next boss if the Kevin MacDonald experiment fails.
Reserve coach MacDonald gets his last chance to stake a claim to be Martin O’Neill’s permanent successor today when Villa face Everton in desperate need of a win.
Thursday’s exit from the Europa League, coming on the back of the embarrassing 6-0 drubbing at newly-promoted Newcastle, has left owner Randy Lerner (above) deciding he must take action tomorrow to sort out the club’s next boss.
Klinsmann, credited with beginning the revolution in German football promoting young players into the national team when he was boss for the 2006 World Cup, fits the profile if Lerner goes for a high-profile replacement.
The 46-year-old, capped 108 times by Germany, has just moved his family back to their California home after an ill-fated spell as boss of Bayern Munich, but has made it clear he’d be open to the right offer to work in England.
He said recently: “The next opportunity I take on must have an environment where I feel really happy. I want to work with people that do it for the right reasons.
“I want to fit into an environment that kind of shares my philosophy, and my philosophy is an attacking style of football.
“That’s just the way I think, and it’s how I built the German team for the 2006 World Cup over two years, which was highly criticised over a long stretch of time, and then they embraced it.
“It’s a style of play that takes time to implement, and you need the environment that gives you that time.
“That’s why I’m cautious. It needs to fit.”
That accords with Lerner’s vision for Villa after the American banking billionaire realised he can’t compete with Manchester City’s spending and needs to find another way to build a sustainable model.
He wants a boss he can work with rather than be confrontational after falling out with O’Neill over transfer plans.
Klinsmann’s gentlemanly style is just right – and he also has the standing in the game both to inspire the young players coming through the club’s academy scheme as well as manage the senior stars bought by O’Neill. Klinsmann had begun a behind-the-scenes revolution improving Bayern Munich’s youth structure before falling out with directors who were impatient for first-team results.
He was sacked even though the team were just three points off the top of the Bundesliga.
Current USA coach Bob Bradley is not seen as a viable option because Lerner is aware the fans don’t want him due to his lack of European experience.
Former player Ian Taylor warned: “All the fans that I’ve spoken to want a bigger name than Bradley as the next Villa manager.
“The most common thing you hear from them is they want someone who has actually managed in the league – or knows what the Premier League is all about.”
MacDonald insists he’s still a credible candidate.
He said: “I’d like to think I’m still a viable option if we get the right result against Everton.
“That would mean two wins, two defeats and a draw so then you’re 50-50.
“From that point of view if I made the choice that I’d like to talk to them, I’d like to think they would still give me that opportunity.”