Former USMNT coach Jurgen Klinsmann has launched his latest attack on Bundesliga club Hertha Berlin.
In a diary published by German outlet Bild on Wednesday, Klinsmann accused the club of a “culture of lying”. Klinsmann lasted 76 days as manager of the club before resigning from his position earlier this month.
“The leadership must immediately be sacked,” Klinsmann said. “Should this not happen, all the good signings will turn into average players because there is one basic rule in football: You are only as good as the environment you play in.”
In addition, the diary also stated back in November: “Klinsmann calls Ralf Rangnick, who has twice shown at Hoffenheim and Leipzig that he can do such jobs successfully. Rangnick makes it clear that he believes the project in Berlin is exciting but he would never join with [sporting executive] Michael Preetz.”
Klinsmann posted a 3-3-4 record in 10 league matches in charge at Berlin, his first job in three years since being fired from U.S. Soccer. Back in mid-February, Klinsmann was banned from an immediate return to his position with Hertha Berlin’s supervisory board.
Preetz acknowledged the news of Klinsmann’s actions and responded in a press conference on Wednesday in Berlin. “We took note of our former coach’s allegations with deep concern,” Preetz said. “The club takes damage through things like that. We reserve the right to take legal action.”
Berlin has struggled in 2019-20, currently sitting in 14th place in the Bundesliga table. The club spent roughly €80m on new players in the January transfer window — more than any other club in Europe — but with 11 matches left to be played in the 2019-20 season, they remain in a battle against relegation.
They are six points clear of the relegation playoff spot, currently held by Fortuna Dusseldorf. The two teams will meet on Friday in a major six-pointer at Merkur Spielarena.
“The club would have been directly relegated to the second tier without the change in the dugout in November,” Klinsmann said. “They were just not prepared for this situation. Years and years of catastrophic failings from Michael Preetz in all things related to the sporting sector. Catastrophic squad planning by Michael Preetz. There is a culture of lying which destroyed the mutual trust between Preetz and the players.”
Klinsmann could face possible legal trouble following his latest actions, keeping him without a managerial job into the future.