The same, but different. It seems the best we can hope for in this new normal that nobody wanted.

For the first time since the 2013 Champions League final between Bayern Munch and Borussia Dortmund, the Bundesliga was at the centre of the football world on Saturday.

Tentative steps taken elsewhere, most notably in Korea, meant the global audience tuning in knew much of what to expect in terms of oddities - from players and staff arriving in masks, to their voices echoing around cavernous stadia.

But how would the football look in this setting? Would there be a pre-season feel as one of Europe's elite leagues punched below its weight?

In each of the five Saturday afternoon kick-offs, there was evidence of players feeling their way in amid peculiar circumstances.

In the Revierderby, Schalke enjoyed more territory than Dortmund during the opening minutes, attacking a Yellow Wall without a single one of its howling bricks at Signal Iduna Park.

At the Red Bull Arena, the other side rivalling Bayern for the title, RB Leipzig looked not to have missed a beat as the slickly set about Freiburg.

Those early suggestions were entirely deceptive. Never mind your latest Netflix series, the Bundesliga has you covered for sneaking, snaking plot twists.

This was a slow burning drama, with almost half an hour passing before a goal was scored. When it arrived, it came from a superstar member of the cast.

Erling Haaland's 29th-minute opener was a beautiful goal, immaculately constructed. Julian Brandt, who schemed wonderfully to befuddle the Schalke defence for much of the match, sent a cute flick into Thorgan Hazard's path.

The Belgium international's clipped cross allowed Haaland to open his body and coolly finish left footed for a 10th goal in nine Bundesliga outings. Much as crowd noise was wanting, the crunch of the ball hitting the netting was a sound to enjoy everywhere apart from Gelsenkirchen. It's still nice to see, hear and feel nice things.

Haaland's choice of celebration was a swaggering dance at an acceptable distance from his team-mates. This jarred a little, only because the teenager had just got involved in penalty area confrontation with Jean-Clair Todibo at close quarters.

Incidentally, the lack of fans meant Todibo could be heard suggesting Haaland do something unmentionable to this grandmother that would certainly be at odds with social distancing.

Pandemic-aware celebrations elsewhere saw Renato Steffen punch fists with Wolfsburg team-mates after an emphatically thumping header set their 2-1 win at Augsburg in motion, while Freiburg bumped elbows with one another when Manuel Gulde's fortuitous flick stunned Leipzig.

Captain Yussuf Poulsen equalised before Freiburg thought they had a winner, although through Robin Koch's humerus hitting happiness was short-lived due to the looming, all-knowing baddie most people can't abide – VAR, the Carole Baskin of the piece.

The more the action wore on, the easier it felt to immerse yourself in familiar story lines.

Three consecutive draws mean Leipzig's title push is spluttering, while Dortmund's is powering through the gears. Their other goals in the 4-0 shellacking of Schalke were just as easy on the eye as Haaland's.

Raphael Guerreiro was on target twice, either side of Hazard as Brandt continued to slice the visitors apart on a day when their goalkeeper Markus Schubert could scarcely have looked less composed.

At the other end of the table, Fortuna Dusseldorf hit post and bar on three occasions as they drew 0-0 with bottom club Paderborn – profligacy they will hope does not haunt them in the final analysis.

After half-time, the goals piled up alongside some clanging errors. Perhaps a by-product of fitness levels still needing to be sharpened, but maybe just football being football.

No element of the Leipzig lockdown could be blamed for Ademola Lookman's howling close-range miss, a moment when the English youngster was probably thankful no fans could offer helpful pointers.

Ihlas Bebou erred with the goal similarly at his mercy for Hoffenheim and the Dietmar Hopp financed outfit crashed further, unable to reboot from Kevin Akpoguma's own goal as Hertha Berlin stormed to a 3-0 away victory.

By contrast, Wolfsburg left it late and Daniel Ginczek gave the Bundesliga's return a stoppage-time winner.

Overall, the distraction of the strange settings did not stop this being a nice distraction. So long as risks to the health and welfare of those involved are at a minimum – and the Bundesliga has been rigorous – that feels okay.

Wonderful goals and dreadful errors, beauty and comedy, a Bundesliga title race and a relegation scrap. The same, but different and a welcome addition to the new normal.

After a two-month absence due to the coronavirus crisis, football in one of Europe's major leagues returns on Saturday as the Bundesliga resumes.

Though no fans will be present in the grounds, there are sure to be millions watching from home as the German top flight gets back up and running.

The Revierderby between Schalke and Borussia Dortmund is the headline fixture, while title hopefuls RB Leipzig and Borussia Monchengladbach are also in action on Saturday.

There is a crunch clash between strugglers Fortuna Dusseldorf and Paderborn, with two places and six points separating the teams.

Elsewhere, Augbsurg host Wolfsburg and Hoffenheim go up against Hertha Berlin.

Using Opta data, we take a look ahead to all of Saturday's Bundesliga fixtures.

 

Fortuna Dusseldorf v Paderborn

10 – Fortuna occupy the relegation play-off place as it stands and have won just one of their last 10 league games against Paderborn, defeating them in April 2014 in the second tier.

22 – Fortuna's tally of 22 points from 25 games represents their second-worst points haul at this stage of a Bundesliga season. They are also without a win in four league matches.

4 – Paderborn have lost their last four Bundesliga games. They last had a similar losing run in September and October this season, when they suffered five defeats on the bounce.

Borussia Dortmund v Schalke

180 – This will be the 180th Revierderby. Dortmund have only won one of the last eight meetings, beating Schalke 2-1 in December 2018. 

1 – Dortmund's 4-2 defeat in their last home clash with Schalke is their only league defeat at Signal Iduna Park under Lucien Favre.

14 – David Wagner's Schalke were only one point behind Dortmund prior to their first meeting this season, but 14 points now separate the sides.

9 – Since signing for Dortmund in January, Erling Haaland (9) has scored more than double the amount of goals Schalke (4) have managed since the mid-season break so far.

387 – Schalke have only managed to score once in their last 387 minutes of Bundesliga action, whereas Dortmund have scored 10 times in the same amount of minutes.

800 – Should Dortmund win, it would be their 800th Bundesliga victory. Schalke, meanwhile, will have let in 2,500 Bundesliga goals should they concede at least once on Saturday.

 

RB Leipzig v Freiburg

2 – Leipzig had not enjoyed the best start to 2020 prior to the suspension of the league. They had won just two of their last seven Bundesliga games, drawing their last two.

43 – Against current Bundesliga teams, Leipzig only have a higher loss percentage against Bayern (50 per cent) than Freiburg (43 per cent).

26 – Leipzig have conceded just 26 goals in the Bundesliga this term, meaning they have the joint-best defence, along with Bayern.

252 – Freiburg's 3-1 win against Union Berlin last time out ended the club's run of 252 minutes without a goal. They netted three times against Union, which is more than in their previous six games combined (2).

 

Hoffenheim v Hertha Berlin

8 – Hoffenheim are unbeaten in their last eight Bundesliga matches against Hertha. They have never managed a longer undefeated run in the top flight against any other side.

5 – However, Hoffenheim have gone their last five Bundesliga games in a row without a win.

48 – Hertha, meanwhile, have conceded 48 goals after 25 Bundesliga games this season. They last let in at least as many at this stage in 1990-91, when they were relegated.

Augbsurg v Wolfsburg

8 – Augsburg's heaviest Bundesliga defeat came against Wolfsburg in May 2019, as they went down 8-1 away from home.

18 – While Wolfsburg have conceded just 17 goals in the second half of Bundesliga matches this season, Augsburg have let in 18 since the winter break.

20 – Only struggling Werder Bremen (21) have dropped more points from winning positions than Augsburg (20) this term.

 

Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Monchengladbach

0 – After winning both Bundesliga matches against Gladbach in 2017-18, Frankfurt have not won any of their last three games against the Foals.

34 – However, Eintracht have beat Gladbach 34 times in the Bundesliga in total. They have only recorded more victories over Bremen.

49 – Gladbach have taken 49 points from the first 25 Bundesliga matches of the season – this is the same as in their title-winning campaign of 1974-75.

100 – Should Oscar Wendt feature in a Gladbach triumph, he would bring up his 100th Bundesliga win, becoming the first foreign-born player to reach the milestone with the club.

Former Germany star Thomas Doll is enthused by the Bundesliga's pending return and praised the German Football League (DFL) for getting the professional game up and running once more.

The Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga will resume on Saturday, with the Revierderby clash between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke a standout fixture.

Bayern Munich continue their pursuit of an eighth consecutive title at Union Berlin on Sunday.

A detailed programme of coronavirus testing and social distancing measures have been put in place by the DFL to ensure the smoothest progress possible after the German government granted permission for sport to return, and ex-Hamburg and Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Doll is impressed.

"I am more than ready for the restart," Doll told Stats Perform. "Everybody who loves football must have been missing it really bad - even if we know that there are a lot of topics, which are even more important than football.

"I also talked to a lot of guys, everybody is happy about the restart. There is a difference between an arena with spectators and an empty one, but I think everybody is aware of the fact, that there is no other possibility right now."

An extensive roll-out of COVID-19 testing to all of Germany's top 36 clubs has formed a key pillar in the restart plans.

Cologne entertain Mainz on Sunday despite confirming three positive tests – reported to be two players and a physiotherapist – last week, while Dynamo Dresden's 2. Bundesliga meetings with Hannover and Furth will be rescheduled after their squad were placed in quarantine for two weeks.

"I think the restart can succeed, if everybody is acting according to this brilliant concept of the DFL, which is not that easy to handle," Doll said. "If everybody sticks to this it can work out.

"We already saw a lot of tests, to I think about 2,000 persons only in the Bundesliga. Cologne were affected already, unfortunately now it is Dynamo Dresden and Hannover. That's too bad, because you don't want to be behind the other teams."

The Bundesliga's restart plans were cast in an unhelpful light when experienced Hertha Berlin attacker Salomon Kalou posted a now-deleted Facebook video of himself flouting social distancing and safety measures at the club's training groud.

Hertha suspended the Ivory Coast international and Doll feels they had little choice.

"There was no other possibility to protect the club," he added. "The decision was not only made by [head coach] Bruno Labbadia, the whole club decided to suspend Kalou.

"By now Kalou realises his mistake. But that's no excuse for his failure.

"He is not 18 anymore, so at his age you should be a little bit smarter. He already had paid his price for that. He put Hertha in a very bad situation, so they only had the option to pull the ripcord."

The Bundesliga is back and the new schedule has been confirmed by the German Football League (DFL).

After the German government on Wednesday granted permission for the top two tiers to return behind closed doors, DFL chief executive Christian Seifert confirmed games will get back under way on May 16.

The Revierderby between Borussia Dortmund and Schalke will headline the first group of matches, while league leaders Bayern Munich are in action next Sunday and Bayer Leverkusen will travel to Werder Bremen the following day.

The rest of the Bundesliga season has also been mapped out, with the eight rounds of fixtures – and Werder's game in hand against Eintracht Frankfurt – to be contested before the final day on June 27.

 

Matchday 26 (all times local):
May 16 – 15:30: Borussia Dortmund v Schalke
May 16 – 15:30: RB Leipzig v Freiburg
May 16 – 15:30: Hoffenheim v Hertha Berlin
May 16 – 15:30: Fortuna Dusseldorf v Paderborn
May 16 – 15:30: Augsburg v Wolfsburg
May 16 – 18:30: Eintracht Frankfurt v Borussia Monchengladbach
May 17 – 15:30: Cologne v Mainz
May 17 – 18:00: Union Berlin v Bayern Munich
May 18 – 20:30: Werder Bremen v Bayer Leverkusen

Matchday 27 (from May 22-24):
Bayern Munich v Eintracht Frankfurt
Borussia Monchengladbach v Bayer Leverkusen
Wolfsburg v Borussia Dortmund
Hertha Berlin v Union Berlin
Mainz v RB Leipzig
Freiburg v Werder Bremen
Schalke v Augsburg
Cologne v Fortuna Dusseldorf
Paderborn v Hoffenheim

Matchday 28 (May 26-27):
Borussia Dortmund v Bayern Munich
RB Leipzig v Hertha Berlin
Bayer Leverkusen v Wolfsburg
Eintracht Frankfurt v Freiburg
Werder Bremen v Borussia Monchengladbach
Hoffenheim v Cologne
Fortuna Dusseldorf v Schalke
Augsburg v Paderborn
Union Berlin v Mainz

Matchday 29 (May 29-June 1):
Bayern Munich v Fortuna Dusseldorf
Borussia Monchengladbach v Union Berlin
Wolfsburg v Eintracht Frankfurt
Hertha Berlin v Augsburg
Mainz v Hoffenheim
Freiburg v Bayer Leverkusen
Schalke v Werder Bremen
Cologne v RB Leipzig
Paderborn v Borussia Dortmund

Matchday 24 (June 2/3):
Werder Bremen v Eintracht Frankfurt

Matchday 30 (June 5-8):
Borussia Dortmund v Hertha Berlin
RB Leipzig v Paderborn
Bayer Leverkusen v Bayern Munich
Eintracht Frankfurt v Mainz
Werder Bremen v Wolfsburg
Fortuna Dusseldorf v Hoffenheim
Freiburg v Borussia Monchengladbach
Augsburg v Cologne
Union Berlin v Schalke

Matchday 31 (June 12-14):
Bayern Munich v Borussia Monchengladbach
Wolfsburg v Freiburg
Hoffenheim v RB Leipzig
Fortuna Dusseldorf v Borussia Dortmund
Hertha Berlin v Eintracht Frankfurt
Mainz v Augsburg
Schalke v Bayer Leverkusen
Cologne v Union Berlin
Paderborn v Werder Bremen

Matchday 32 (June 16-17):
Borussia Dortmund v Mainz
RB Leipzig v Fortuna Dusseldorf
Bayer Leverkusen v Cologne
Borussia Monchengladbach v Wolfsburg
Eintracht Frankfurt v Schalke
Werder Bremen v Bayern Munich
Freiburg v Hertha Berlin
Augsburg v Hoffenheim
Union Berlin v Paderborn

Matchday 33 (all at 15:30 local time on June 20):
Bayern Munich v Freiburg
RB Leipzig v Borussia Dortmund
Hoffenheim v Union Berlin
Fortuna Dusseldorf v Augsburg
Hertha Berlin v Bayer Leverkusen
Mainz v Werder Bremen
Schalke v Wolfsburg
Cologne v Eintracht Frankfurt
Paderborn v Borussia Monchengladbach

Matchday 34 (all at 15:30 local time on June 27):
Borussia Dortmund v Hoffenheim
Bayer Leverkusen v Mainz
Borussia Monchengladbach v Hertha Berlin
Wolfsburg v Bayern Munich
Eintracht Frankfurt v Paderborn
Werder Bremen v Cologne
Freiburg v Schalke
Augsburg v RB Leipzig
Union Berlin v Fortuna Dusseldorf

Salomon Kalou has been suspended by Hertha Berlin after he potentially jeopardised the Bundesliga's hopes of a return to action this month by flouting social distancing measures.

The veteran Ivory Coast forward posted a now-deleted video on Facebook that showed him shaking hands with team-mates and a member of staff.

Kalou bumped fists before speaking to Vedad Ibisevic, with the Hertha captain seemingly complaining about the pay cut he took as part of the response to the ongoing coronavirus heath crisis.

The ex-Chelsea player also interrupted what appeared to be a COVID-19 test being undertaken by defender Jordan Torunarigha.

A statement from Hertha read: "With his video, Salomon Kalou gave the impression that Hertha BSC's players are not taking the required social distancing and hygiene guidelines of health services seriously.

"Hertha BCS would like to clarify that these were the actions of one individual player. The fact that other team members did not draw his attention to this transgression, and instead returned the greeting with a handshake, makes it clear that rules on social distancing must be enforced with even greater intensity.

"With this video taken inside the team's dressing room, Kalou broke clear internal rules and displayed a behaviour that is neither appropriate for this current situation nor reflective of the code of conduct of Hertha BSC. The club has therefore made the decision to suspend the player in question from training and matches with immediate effect.

"The discussion on partially waiving the salaries of the Hertha BSC's professional players was caused by incorrect calculations. These have since been corrected.

"These measures were openly discussed in coordination with everyone and supported by all of the players. There was no internal criticism. On the contrary, everybody welcomed these measures."

Kalou apologised in the statement, saying: "I'm sorry if I gave the impression that I'm not taking coronavirus seriously. I want to apologise for this.

"The reality is the exact opposite, because I'm really worried about the people of Africa, because health systems aren't as good there as they are in Germany.

"I didn't really think it through and was excited that my tests came back negative. I would also like to apologise to all those who appeared in the video, who didn't know that I was broadcasting live and whom I didn't want to bring into this situation."

Earlier on Monday, the German Football League (DFL) revealed 10 positive results had been returned from Bundesliga and 2.Bundesliga clubs from more than 1,700 tests carried out since last Thursday.

Having detailed such steps as part of its attempts to secure a restart to competitive action – perhaps as early as the middle of this month - the league tweeted a short statement strongly criticising Kalou.

"The pictures of Salomon Kalou from the dressing room of Hertha BSC are absolutely unacceptable," the statement said. 

"This cannot be tolerated when other players and clubs have stuck to the guidelines because they have grasped the seriousness of the situation."

Marko Grujic hopes to discuss his Liverpool future in the coming months having admitted it is difficult to make the breakthrough at Anfield.

The Serbian midfielder, who turns 24 next week, is currently on his second season-long loan spell with Bundesliga side Hertha Berlin.

Prior to that, he spent time with Cardiff City in the Championship and it has been over two years since he made a Premier League appearance for Liverpool.

Grujic is under contract until 2023 but his lack of first-team opportunities under Jurgen Klopp means he knows he must consider his next step carefully.

"I hope that [talks] will happen in the next few months," he told The Athletic.

"I'm sure we will sit down and discuss what is best for the club and what is best for me.

“I'm not a youngster any more. At the age of 24, I'm at the stage when I need to be making important steps in my career. I need to think and I need to be clever about what happens next.

"Is the best thing to stay in Liverpool and wait for a chance or is it time to have another loan or move to another club? At the moment, I don't know the answer. Everything is still open.

"The Bundesliga is a good league and over the past two years I’ve gained a lot of important experience and I feel like I’ve improved as a player."

Klopp typically operates with a three-man midfield and is blessed with plenty of options in that area, including Jordan Henderson, Georginio Wijnadlum, Naby Keita, Fabinho, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and James Milner.

"That challenge is so big," Grujic added. "Those boys have performed so well this season, which I'm happy about.

"There are a lot of quality midfielders at Liverpool. It's honestly hard to get a chance."

Bruno Labbadia has been named as the new head coach of Hertha Berlin.

The Bundesliga club have brought forward the appointment of the 54-year-old, who was originally due to take over at the end of the season before the Bundesliga was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Labbadia, who will take charge from April 13, succeeds Alexander Nouri in the role after he had overseen four games since the resignation of Jurgen Klinsmann.

"Due to the current situation regarding the coronavirus and the interruption to the season, we're currently experiencing a kind of early summer break," said Hertha managing director Michael Preetz.

"We have decided to take this opportunity to be able to prepare the team over the next few weeks for a possible continuation of the season."

Bundesliga CEO Christian Seifert confirmed this week that the league plans to resume behind closed doors during May.

Labbadia was most recently in charge of Wolfsburg but left at the end of last season after leading them to a sixth-place finish in the league and qualification for the Europa League.

Hertha were 13th in the table when the season was halted due to the COVID-19 crisis.

Wednesday has seen the coronavirus outbreak take further toll on sport across the world.

Further matches have been postponed while others appear unable to go ahead due to increased travel restrictions between affected countries.

Governing bodies are also taking steps to reduce the spread of COVID-19 by cancelling planned meetings, while others are calling for further changes to the calendar.

Here are some of the latest events to be impacted.

Football's governing body has decided to cancel the next FIFA Congress in Addis Ababa on June 5. It has also pushed back the coming FIFA Council meeting in Zurich, due to be on March 20, until June or July. Attendees may be required to join via a video link.

In France, the Coupe de la Ligue final on April 4 between Paris Saint-Germain and Lyon has been postponed. The Ligue de Football Professionnel (LFP) said a new date would be announced in due course. It means the PSG-Metz and Lyon-Nimes Ligue 1 matches will be moved to the weekend of April 4-5 but be held behind closed doors. PSG will have Kylian Mbappe available against Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday, though: the striker is in the squad after overcoming illness, with L'Equipe among those to report he had tested negative for coronavirus.

Germany has seen the first confirmed instance of a footballer contracting coronavirus. Hannover defender Timo Hubers has tested positive but been praised by the club for his "absolutely exemplary" behaviour, as he immediately self-isolated before coming into contact with the rest of the squad.

Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich will face Union Berlin on Saturday behind closed doors, and the latter's derby with Hertha Berlin on March 21 will take place under the same circumstances. Borussia Monchengladbach have urged fans not to gather outside the stadium ahead of Wednesday's match with Cologne.

FIFPro, the footballers' union, has urged governing bodies across the world "to respect the wishes of players to take short-term precautionary measures including suspending training or competitions". Steps are certainly being taken in Spain, where the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) has recommended football at all levels beneath the top two professional leagues to be called off for two weeks. The RFEF will reportedly meet with league officials to discuss similar proposals for LaLiga and the Segunda Division.

Meanwhile, Roma's match with Sevilla in the Europa League last 16 on Thursday is off after the Italian club confirmed they had not been given permission by the government to fly to Andalusia. Getafe had already refused to travel for their game with Inter in Italy.

The big news in England was that Manchester City versus Arsenal was called off as a precaution after the Gunners came into contact with Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis, who announced on Tuesday that he had caught the disease. In general, though, the UK has not been following the same stringent protocols as some other European nations and that is continuing for now. Arsenal's match with Brighton and Hove Albion on Saturday has not been called off, while England's planned friendlies at Wembley this month against Italy and Denmark are, at present, going ahead. Forest have also confirmed all players and staff have tested negative for coronavirus.

In Scotland, Rangers boss Steven Gerrard says the domestic season must be completed, even if behind closed doors, "because people have earned the opportunity to get to the stage where everyone is at". League chief executive Neil Doncaster claimed last week that completing the Premiership season could become "very difficult".

The England and Wales Cricket Board has told supporters "to maintain good levels of hygiene" during England's tour of Sri Lanka. As a precaution, players and staff have been told to avoid casual interaction with fans, such as selfies and autographs.

In Bangladesh, the World XI v Asia XI matches that would have marked the birthday celebrations of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman have been postponed, while the Indian Open has been called off following a consultation between the Indian Golf Union, the European Tour, the Asian Tour and tournament sponsors.

MotoGP has also announced that the Argentina Grand Prix has been moved to November. The opening race of the season in Qatar and the Grand Prix of the Americas have already been rescheduled.

Manchester City's two-season Champions League ban could be about to reverberate through the Premier League.

Pep Guardiola's future had been a topic of discussion prior to UEFA handing down sanctions for "serious" Financial Fair Play breaches and the loss of European competition has fuelled suggestions the Catalan could quit the club.

Media reports indicate City already have alternatives in mind, and their search for a successor looks set to pose problems for Premier League rivals.

 

TOP STORY – CITY EYE PEP REPLACEMENTS

Mauricio Pochettino and Brendan Rodgers are among the contenders to take over at City if Guardiola walks, according to The Telegraph.

The report states the pair "would be in the running" to become the club's next manager in the event their current boss decides to leave at the end of the season.

Ex-Tottenham manager Pochettino recently admitted he would "love" to return to the Premier League, telling the 'In The Pink' podcast: "It's going to be difficult, I know, and for now it's a moment to wait and we'll see what happens."

The Argentinian has been heavily linked to City's cross-town rivals Manchester United, while Rodgers is tied to Leicester City until 2025.

ROUND-UP

- Juventus-linked Guardiola might not be the only big name headed for the Etihad Stadium exit. The Sun claims Real Madrid will launch an "all-out assault" in a bid to sign Raheem Sterling.

- City could potentially even be docked Premier League points for the same Financial Fair Play breaches that compelled UEFA to act, says The Guardian.

- Meanwhile, over at Old Trafford, United have set their asking price for Paul Pogba at £130million, reports the Daily Star.

- As for potential arrivals, United are interested in Norwich City pair Todd Cantwell and Max Aarons plus West Ham midfielder Declan Rice, states the Daily Mail.

- Serie A side Milan are no closer to extending Gianluigi Donnarumma's deal beyond June 2021, according to Tuttomercato, and LaLiga title contenders Madrid are monitoring the situation.

- Sky Sport Germany continues to link former Bayern Munich boss Niko Kovac to manager-less Bundesliga outfit Hertha Berlin, who saw Jurgen Klinsmann leave earlier in the week.

Jurgen Klinsmann will not be allowed to revert to a position on Hertha Berlin's board after his "unacceptable" departure as head coach of the Bundesliga side.

Klinsmann stepped down after 11 weeks in charge of Hertha and three wins from nine league matches, citing a lack of "trust" from the club's hierarchy.

In a Facebook Live video on Wednesday, the former Bayern Munich, Tottenham and Germany striker expanded on this – alluding to interference from above and disagreements on "many things".

When he resigned, Klinsmann said he expected to resume a role on Hertha's supervisory board, but primary investor Lars Windhorst told a news conference on Thursday that his conduct had made this an untenable prospect.

"Unfortunately, I must say that the way Jurgen Klinsmann resigned makes a further working relationship with him on the board of Hertha BSC impossible," Windhorst said.

"Unfortunately, the way he left is so unacceptable that we cannot continue a constructive collaboration between him and the other people in charge.

"If we can count on him and his guidance in some other form in the future after all the dust has settled, we will see. I am neither shutting any doors, nor am I knocking anyone out as it has been written today.

"However, it is regrettable that his resignation has been so abrupt, which is why Jurgen Klinsmann lost a lot of credibility. That is really sad."

Hertha's sporting executive Michael Preetz conceded there were differences of opinion between himself and Klinsmann, although he felt the latter might have exaggerated these for his own ends.

"There are different views [between Klinsmann and me] on how the job of a head coach is defined," Preetz said.

"It is correct that we could not agree until he resigned. However, things that I heard yesterday, that I am sitting on the bench and show up on the sideline, were never discussed between the two of us.

"If there are problems and conflicts then I am used to discussing them and to try and find a solution. You can't do that if you turn around and run away."

A 3-1 defeat at home to Mainz in what proved to be Klinsmann's final game at the helm left Hertha 14th in the Bundesliga – six points ahead of third-bottom Fortuna Dusseldorf.

Jurgen Klinsmann put his abrupt resignation as Hertha Berlin coach down to disagreements with the club about "many things", particularly his responsibilities.

Klinsmann was hired by Hertha in November following the departure of Ante Covic and he was heavily backed in the transfer market, with Lucas Tousart, Krzysztof Piatek, Matheus Cunha and Santiago Ascacibar all arriving in a reported €80million splurge last month.

But after Saturday's 3-1 home defeat by Mainz left them 14th in the Bundesliga, the 55-year-old quit his role citing a lack of "trust" from the club's hierarchy.

On Wednesday he went into greater depth about his decision in a video streamed on social media, explaining his frustration at not having greater control.

"Conditions were very difficult for me, perhaps because I've had other experiences in other countries. I've experienced life in Italy and France and England, of course," the former Tottenham, Monaco and Inter striker said.

"In Germany we're used to having a manager on the substitutes' bench at the side of the pitch and that he participates, that he's there for the players, and keeps the door open for them. I wasn't used to that anymore.

"I know the English model for a manager - they're called managers in England, not coaches - has only one job and that's being the boss of the club.

"They're different in Germany, where everyone gets to have their say, everyone plays a role, the whole management structure.

"In the end only one can decide, and I feel it has to be the coach, and we [him and the club] disagreed there. Unfortunately, we disagreed on many things."

But he reassured supporters who suggested Klinsmann was leaving the club in a mess, with the former Bayern Munich boss convinced Hertha are in a healthy position despite their proximity to the bottom three.

"A lot of you said it ended in chaos - that's absolutely not true, absolutely not true," he continued.

"This team is stabilised. We came in and the team was practically in a relegation place, level on points, and now there's a six-point difference. The team is stabilised and playing in whole different way to the way we found it.

"The goal for the year is survival, next year the goal is towards Europe. The goals are very important. If you don't have goals, there's no point in getting out of bed in the morning."

Jurgen Klinsmann has resigned as Hertha Berlin head coach after just 11 weeks at the helm, citing a lack of "trust" from the club's hierarchy. 

The former Germany boss, who assumed the role in November on a deal until the end of the season following Ante Covic's departure, confirmed he was stepping down on Tuesday.

Writing on Facebook, the 55-year-old said he would revert to his position as a member of the supervisory board at the Bundesliga club, who sit 14th.

"At the end of November we met the wishes of the club management with a highly competent team and helped them in a difficult time," wrote Klinsmann, who won three of his nine league matches in charge.

"We were on a very good path in the relatively short time, and thanks to the support of many people, we are now six points away from the relegation places despite mostly difficult games. 

"I am firmly convinced that Hertha will achieve the goal – remaining in the division.

"As head coach, however, I also need the trust of the people involved for this task, which has not yet been completed. 

"Unity, cohesion and focus on the essential are the most important elements, especially in the relegation battle. If they are not guaranteed, I cannot exploit my potential as a coach and therefore cannot live up to my responsibility.

"Therefore, after much deliberation, I came to the conclusion that I would give up my position as head coach at Hertha and retire to my original long-term role as a member of the supervisory board."

His statement came before any official word from the club.

Jurgen Klinsmann has resigned as Hertha Berlin head coach after just 11 weeks at the helm.

The former Germany boss, who assumed the role in November following Ante Covic's departure, confirmed he was stepping down on Tuesday.

Writing on Facebook, the 55-year-old said he would revert to his position as a member of the supervisory board at the Bundesliga club.

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