Stuart Webber got it right with Daniel Farke appointment
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017
Daniel Farke was unveiled as head coach of Norwich City on May 25, 2017 and much has changed since the German joined, as David Freezer recalls
It was three years ago when the Daniel Farke era began at Norwich City.
In reaching the landmark the German joins Nigel Worthington as the only man to have lasted more than three years in the hot seat since the turn of the millennium.
Indeed since the lengthy reigns of John Bond, Ken Brown and Dave Stringer which stretched from 1973 to 1992, it’s only Mike Walker who has lasted more than three years - and that was across two spells.
Since club legend Stringer stepped down there have been 16 managers, or head coach, as Farke’s role was officially announced by sporting director Stuart Webber at Carrow Road on May 25, 2017.
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City’s first overseas appointment of their main man has gone rather well too, overcoming a transitional season featuring a fair few hiccups along the way to 14th place in the Championship, to surging towards the title in 2019 amid a renewed vigour at Carrow Road.
That longevity also means just 16 managers in England have been in their role longer than Farke in the top four tiers, with Gareth Ainsworth of Wycombe the current longest serving, having been with the League One play-off hopefuls for over seven years.
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That puts him narrowly ahead of Eddie Howe at Bournemouth and Sean Dyche at Burnley, with Farke’s compatriot Jurgen Klopp of Liverpool in fifth.
Canaries chief Webber was confident he had the right man for the job from the start, saying on the day Farke was unveiled at Carrow Road: “People talk about the risk for us. It is a huge risk for him as well.
“His family are over there, he has never worked abroad, he is at a huge club in Germany who wanted him to stay, because he had done a great job. It is no secret he turned down a Bundesliga job (at Darmstadt) in January and would have had offers this summer.
“For him, this is as big a risk, which is why it took time to tie it down. He is unbelievably highly thought of as a progressive coach in Germany. It was not easy to get him.”
It remains to be seen if Farke will be able to defy the odds and keep City in the Premier League but his job is largely seen as secure despite his team being six points from safety with nine games to go, having signed a contract until 2022 thanks to the all-round progress of his project.