Germany coach Joachim Loew to leave a year early after summer Euros tournament
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BERLIN - Germany coach Joachim Loew will step down from the role he has had since 2006 after the end of this summer's European Championship, he said on Tuesday.
Loew, who has a contract until 2022, led Germany to the World Cup title in 2014 but his team crashed out of the first round in 2018 and has been struggling to perform at top level in recent years.
"I take this step consciously, full of pride and also very thankful and with uninterrupted motivation for the Euro," Loew said in a statement.
The 61-year-old first joined the team in 2004 as assistant to Juergen Klinsmann before taking over in 2006. He led them to the Euro 2008 final before winning the World Cup six years later. He has coached them for 189 games, having won 120 and lost 31.
"I am proud because it was an honour for me to work for my country and because for almost 17 years I have worked with the best players in the country and accompanied them in their development," Loew said.
"We are joined by great triumphs and painful defeats but most of all many magic moments -- not only the World Cup win in 2014 in Brazil."
Loew's brand of football turned Germany into an attack-minded and highly skilled team in contrast to the past image of the hardworking Germans who made up for their lack of skills with raw power and determination.
An exciting semi-final run with big wins over England and Argentina at the 2010 World Cup were the first clear signs of Loew's style that would conquer the world four years later.
Their 7-1 demolition of hosts Brazil in the semi-final of the 2014 tournament stunned the football world and was arguably the best performance by Loew's team with its quick passing style that dismantled the Brazilian defence in a sensational first half.
"I have great respect for Joachim Loew's decision," said German Football Association (DFB) President Fritz Keller. "He is one of the greatest coaches in world football. Jogi Loew has left his mark on German football like few others."
Germany face France, Hungary and Poland in their Euro group matches in June.