Jurgen Klinsmann is back in professional soccer. The former Germany international has officially been hired as South Korea’s new Head Coach.

Klinsmann has been out of football since 2020. His ill-fated return to domestic coaching ended with dismissal at Hertha Berlin.

However, the former USMNT Head Coach remains incredibly respected within the sport.

His work in America is lauded, despite it not producing the desired end-results. He will now be entrusted with shaping the next generation of South Korean footballers.

Klinsmann will be in charge through the 2026 World Cup

South Korean football has been on a steady upward curve ever since the 2002 World Cup. They co-hosted the event and shocked the world by reaching the semi-final.

Players of an incredibly high standard have been produced since then. Heung min-Son is currently the nation’s star performer. However, the team is struggling.

In the 2022 World Cup, they scraped into the knockout stage with four points. They won just one game before being dumped out of the tournament 4-1 by Brazil.

It’s clear the team needs new direction. South Korea hope that Klinsmann can work as diligently behind the scenes as he did in America. 

His contract will run through the 2026 World Cup. He will be entrusted with taking the South Korean side to that tournament.

German coach is honored to take on the role

“I’m very happy and honored to be following in the footsteps of great coaches,” Klinsmann declared.

“From Guus Hiddink to former coach Paulo Bento. 

“I know that the Korean national team has been improving over a long period of time. I will do my best to achieve success in the Asian Cup and 2026 World Cup.” 

It’s not clear yet who will form Klinsmann’s backroom staff. In previous setups he has brought along a number of young coaches. The highest profile is probably Joachim Low. 

His first match in charge of South Korea will come on March 24. The team are scheduled to play in a friendly against Colombia. 

Despite poor results in Qatar, there is a lot of talent at Klinsmann’s immediate disposal. 

In addition to the Tottenham Hotspur forward, Woo-yeong Jeong and Min-jae Kim are in fantastic form. 

With his part in Napoli’s Scudetto charge being clear for all to see, Kim may even be subject of Premier League interest in the coming months.

Photo: IMAGO / Sven Simon