Hansi Flick in Soccer’s Two Greatest Win

FC Bayern which is managed by Hans Dieter Flick managed to beat FC Barcelona in the 2019/20 Champions League quarter-finals with a landslide score, 8-2. FC Barcelona, ​​which is reinforced by Lionel Messi, was made helpless and had to be defeated by a very striking score. Even this match is a streak that will last a long time for FC Barcelona and its fans.

Apart from conquering FC Barcelona, ​​maybe not many people know that Hans Dieter Flick is also an important actor behind another major big win in football history, the Mineirazo tragedy when Brazil was defeated by Germany 1-7 at home. Mineirazo incised an unhealed wound for the Brazilian public. This tragedy opened an old wound that occurred 8 years earlier in the Maracana when Brazil had to be defeated by Uruguay with a score of 1-2.

Brazil’s big ambition to win the 2014 World Cup in their own country ended heartbreaking. Especially when Brazil suffered a 1-7 semi-final defeat against Germany, which was Brazil’s biggest margin of defeat at the World Cup. The world was stunned, it did not make sense, watching the Samba defenses ravaged by Der Panzer. In fact, according to O’Globo [1], more than 37 thousand Brazilians turn off their television every time Brazil is broken.

Everyone will ring back with Mineirazo’s memory every time Brazil meets Germany, even in a friendly match in 2018. Brazil coach, Tite, confirmed this statement. Julio Cesar, the Brazilian goalkeeper who conceded seven goals at that time, was unable to explain exactly what happened. “Germany plays great football”, added Cesar.

Behind the greatness of football played by Germany at that time, Hans Dieter Flick escaped the public eye. In fact, he contributed greatly to the success of the German national team revolution which was built with Joachim Low. This deadly duo changed the face of the German national team drastically. The team that was once known to be boring and slow has transformed into a beautiful, entertaining and passionate orchestra. Low may play a lot in terms of tactics, but Hansi (Hans Dieter Flick’s nickname) plays a big role as an accomplished communicator who makes all the players bring out their best potential.

Arne Friedrich, Sports Director of Hertha Berlin who had tasted the touch of the Low-Hansi duet in the German national team, revealed the important role of the Heidelberg-born man in an interview with Rory Smith [2], a New York Times football correspondent. Hans Dieter Flick for him is a figure who is able to make a conducive dressing room, which is clearly useful for a star-studded team like Bayern Munich, which he coaches now. Flick’s approach is similar to that of Jupp Heynckess, the only coach in Die Roten’s history to have treble winners.

“Heynckess has the ability to build team chemistry. You have never heard of a player complaining when he has to sit on the bench. I think this is similar to what Hansi did, ”Friedrich said.

A quote from Olaf Thon, a former Flick teammate when he played at Bayern Munich, becomes an interesting conclusion at the end of Rory Smith’s writing. “Bayern have quality player material, they will win the Champions League and he (Hansi) will appear to the public as the best coach”. And sure enough, Lisbon bore silent witness to the second big cry Flick made in football history. As well as being an impressive opening campaign in proving the truth of Thon’s prediction.

Flick’s second big cry took place at the da Luz Stadium, Lisbon. Once again, no one thought that Barcelona would be slaughtered 8-2 in the Champions League quarter-finals.

Bayern are indeed the more favored. In addition to their consistent and increasingly impressive performances, on the other hand Barcelona’s performance has also decreased due to internal problems experienced. However, everyone would have never thought that Barcelona would lose by a margin of six goals. Moreover, this is Barcelona’s first defeat by six goals in the history of participation in European competitions.

The first ten minutes became a slick prologue for the duel that was predicted to be fierce. Bayern took the lead quickly and Los Blaugrana replied immediately through David Alaba’s own goal. The high defensive line scheme applied by Die Roten looks very fragile and is a soft food for Barcelona’s front line which is spoiled by the neat placement of the ball behind the Bayern defense line. A number of golden opportunities were created and created a kind of panic for the Bavarian team’s back line quartet.

The following minutes became a nightmare for Barcelona supporters. If there was no pandemic, the view of the glass screens would be decorated with rows of Barcelona supporters sitting grimly silently on stadium benches, like the Brazilian supporters at Mineirao in 2014.

Flick has been a big part of Bayern’s transformation this season. Initially he was only a temporary option to fill the void of the coaching chair after Niko Kovac was sacked after a bad score at the start of this season. Doubts had arisen considering the last time he assumed the position of coach in 2005. There is nothing special about his coaching career. It was unexpected that he became Bayern’s greatest coach by winning 30 victories from 34 matches that had been played.

Bayern could freely appoint a replacement for Kovac by contacting top and tested coaches like Mauricio Pochettino and Massimiliano Allegri without financial worries with large salaries and contract values. However, slowly Flick proved that he was the right person to manage FC Hollywood. Good vertical communication skills helped Flick’s steps to convince management to maintain it.

In addition, Hansi Flick made a radical tactical change which had a significant impact on Bayern’s game. Possession games that emphasize the dominance of lateral passes without the progression of Niko Kovac’s legacy were turned into classy performances with high pressing intensity and a high defensive line. Hansi also brought out the best potential of senior players like Manuel Neuer and Thomas Mueller who were considered to have run out.

Maximizing Mueller is clearly the main key why Bayern is a very clinical team in the penalty box this season. Quoting the writings of Zen RS [3] that Mueller is a “raumdeuter” alias interpreter of space. A player with an archetype similar to Filippo Inzaghi who was never seen throughout the match but who could become the decisive goal scorer. Maximizing his abilities together with the wild Polish predator, Robert Lewandowski, is a scary combination. And Barcelona has tasted that cruelty in Lisbon.

Hansi also succeeded in launching young players like Alphonso Davies, who started getting the chance to play regularly. His experience as a former DFB Sports Director made it easy for him to motivate young players like Leon Goretzka and Serge Gnabry who were able to perform consistently throughout the season.

What Hansi Flick has made in Lisbon is the accumulation of hard work, talent and knowledge. He reminded me of the Marseille character in the La Casa de Papel series. A figure who escapes the attention of the audience but plays a very important behind-the-scenes role in the success of El Professor’s plan. In fact, Hansi Flick is precisely “El Professor” who is the brain of two major big win in the history of modern football.


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