Daniel Farke: The lowdown on Norwich City's head coach target
PUBLISHED: 13:17 23 May 2017 | UPDATED: 14:26 23 May 2017
Daniel Farke has emerged from relative obscurity in English football circles over the past 24 hours to become Norwich City's reported number one head coach target.
Farke appears to have the same pedigree as David Wagner, the man he replaced as Borussia Dortmund’s U23 coach in 2015 when City’s sporting director Stuart Webber enticed Wagner to Championship Huddersfield.
Wagner is one game from clinching a place in the Premier League with the Terriers, who host Reading at Wembley on May 29.
The highly-rated German has done an impressive job at the John Smith’s and justified Webber’s fatih, but who is the man tipped to become Norwich City’s new head coach who stepped into his shoes at the ‘Black and Yellow’ giants?
• What is his background?
Born: October 30 1976.
Farke started out his football journey at his home club SV Steinhausen. The 40-year-old has never managed or even played in Germany’s top division, but his most notable season as a player was in 2002/03 when he scored 28 goals for SV Lippstadt 08, where he had spent the majority of his career and is something of a legend.
The former striker later became a coach and sporting director, where he studied for his Uefa Pro Licence. But the pull of stepping up to manage Dortmund’s best youngsters proved too hard to resist.
• What is his Dortmund record?
Farke took over Dortmund U23s in November 2015 and has made a huge mark. He turned them from a team tipped for relegation to promotion challengers. They finished fourth last season and second this season in the West Regional League - Germany’s fourth tier. They have lost just three games this season under him.
He has had weeks of contract talks with Dortmund but no agreement was reached and he will definitely move on this summer. His contract officially expires in June.
As the Dortmund daily newspaper, Ruhr Nachrichten, puts it: ‘Daniel Farke is too good for the Regional League West.’
• What is he like as a character?
In an interview with the Ruhr Nachrichten at the end of his first season in charge of the U23s, Farke revealed he did the cooking, served the coffees and carried the water bottles up the stairs at the Dortmund training ground. The newspaper said Farke embodies what he expects from his team - being down to earth.
• Can Farke handle the step up and a move to England?
Norwich will present a very different challenge. The role of the U23 teams in German leagues is to develop young players rather than get lots of points and finish high up in the table. But he has a track record of developing youngsters at Dortmund.
He summed up the type of football he wanted to see his team play in an interview last year with the Ruhr Nachrichten – ‘energetic, bold and attacking. We want to have as much of the ball as possible and dominate. The football should reflect Borussia Dortmund and the region, that means never lying down… being down to earth and being passionate.’