Jan Siewert: How have three Borussia Dortmund coaches ended up in England?

By Simon StoneBBC Sport
Farke, Siewert and Wagner
Daniel Farke (left) left Dortmund for Norwich in 2017, Jan Siewert (centre) has just joined Huddersfield from Dortmund and David Wagner (right) made the same move in 2015

Jan Siewert's arrival as the new Huddersfield manager has continued a trend.

The three most recent coaches of Borussia Dortmund's second team have now left the German club to manage in England - Daniel Farke to Norwich and David Wagner at Huddersfield.

It is rare for English clubs to appoint managers straight from junior ranks.

Darren Moore made it at West Brom. But Moore had the added benefits of both being a club legend and being already at the Hawthorns as a youth coach.

Warren Joyce left his job as Manchester United's under-23 manager to become Wigan boss in November 2016. He was sacked less than four months later, having won just six of his 24 games in charge.

Huddersfield have opted for a new boss who has no top-level managerial experience and, as German football expert Raphael Honigstein points out: "Siewert didn't have a Wikipedia page until yesterday."

So, what is so appealing about these young, Dortmund-produced coaches?

The Klopp and Wagner effect

To find the origins of Siewert's appointment, it is necessary to go back to November 2015.

After the failed appointments of Paul Grayson, Mark Robins and Chris Powell, whose tenures were all less than 18 months, Terriers owner Dean Hoyle felt it was time for a change.

Impressed at the impact Jurgen Klopp had made in a single month at Liverpool and gushing about the tactics Klopp had employed to bring back-to-back German titles to Borussia Dortmund and a place in the 2013 Champions League final, Hoyle went to Dortmund himself.

He couldn't afford their first-team coach - Thomas Tuchel, who is now at Paris St-Germain - so he went for the next best thing.

Knowing the German trait of maintaining a style of play throughout the entire club, Hoyle brought in Dortmund's reserve team boss. David Wagner.

David Wagner at HuddersfieldDaniel Farke at Norwich
Played: 154Played: 85
Won: 51 (33.12%)Won: 36 (42.35%)
Lost: 70 (45.45%)Lost: 24 (28.24%)

Within 18 months, Wagner had taken Huddersfield from the brink of relegation to League One into the Premier League for the first time. Even more startlingly, he kept them there.

By this time, Norwich had followed Huddersfield's lead and appointed Farke - Wagner's successor at Dortmund.

As with Wagner, Farke took a bit of time to get his ideas across.

Wagner won 10 (31.25%) of his first 32 games in charge. Farke won 18 (32.72%) of his first 57.

But once his players absorbed their respective managers' tactical demands, the results began to come. Wagner turned Huddersfield into a top-flight club for the first time since 1972.

Farke has Norwich second in the Championship following a run of one defeat in 16 league games.

So, when Wagner went to Hoyle last week and told him he wanted to quit with Huddersfield bottom of the table, the club knew exactly where they wanted to go.

Coaching players, not buying them

Huddersfield have taken 11 points from their opening 23 Premier League games this season, have only won twice and are 10 points from safety.

Hoyle says Huddersfield are "not giving up" and "will fight as hard as possible to retain their top-flight status".

But, speaking on BBC Radio 5 live on Monday, German football expert Honigstein said while he didn't think Siewert's appointment was "the most innovative or ingenious" choice, there could be a major reason for it.

"What German coaches on the whole bring is two things that are very appealing to Huddersfield and other English clubs," he said.

"They are very used to working in a structure where they are not going to come in and say 'I need six or seven players, I need three transfer windows to make this my team'.

"They are used to coaching, they want to have an input when it comes to the squad but their main job is getting the most out of the players that they have.

"If you own a club like Huddersfield that doesn't have the deepest pockets, that is much more attractive than a guy who is going to say to you 'here is my list, please buy them in the next couple of years'."

Who is Jan Siewert?

Wagner and Farke have brought their own skill sets to England - but what can we expect from Siewert?

The 36-year-old had a less than impressive playing career in the German lower leagues.

He embarked on coaching by working with German national youth teams before joining fourth-tier Rot-Weiss Essen in 2015.

From there he went to Bochum, where he was put in charge of the under-19s and, according to Hoyle, first came to Huddersfield's attention.

"We spoke to him two years ago," said Hoyle.

In May 2017, when Farke joined Norwich, Siewert replaced him at Dortmund.

Hoyle admits Siewert has "many similarities" to Wagner, while adding such obvious comparisons "do him a disservice".

"He is his own man," said Hoyle.

A source who has worked closely with Siewert told BBC Sport not to expect "another Jurgen Klopp".

By this they mean he will not be leaping around on the touchline. Like Wagner, his emotions will be kept in check.

As for the tactics. "In the beginning he was quite like Klopp," said the source. "His teams did the same high pressing, searching for mistakes in the opposition.

"Last season they played more with the ball. Jan is very good at working with young players and he likes attacking play."

The major difference Siewert will experience in Huddersfield compared to Dortmund is that his side will not dominate possession and territory, as they did in Germany. There will be no mass defence to try and break down.

"His players are really proud of him," said someone who knows Siewert well. "It is disappointing because he has done such a good job with them and they enjoyed working with him. But deep down they are very happy."

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