The name Felix Magath will resonate with Fulham fans. He had a brief and dismal spell in charge of the club in 2014, but what’s he up to now?
German-born Felix Magath made almost 400 appearances for Hamburger SV in the Bundesliga through the 70’s and 80’s, with over forty caps for West Germany who he’d represented at both the 1982 and ’86 World Cups.
A highly-regarded footballer in Germany at the time, Magath won three domestic titles with Hamburg and the European Cup in 1982. He also went on to have a successful career in the game as a manager, that is he before he joined Fulham.
Magath took the role of Head Coach at Hamburg II in 1993 – his first of ten separate jobs with nine different clubs in German football.
From there he was promoted to manager of Hamburg, before having spells with Nurnberg, Werder Bremen and Eintracht Frankfurt before landing at Stuttgart.
It was with Stuttgart that Magath won his first honour as a manager, the 2002 Intertoto Cup. He spent three years at Stuttgart overseeing 147 games and winning almost exactly half of them and being named German Manager of the Year for the first of three times, before being appointed manager of Bayern Munich in 2004
The most sought after job in German football, Magath was named manager of Bayern Munich on July 1st. Another three-year-spell saw Magath win five domestic including back-to-back Bundesliga and DFB Pokal titles in the 2004/05 and 2005/06 seasons.
What followed next was arguably Magath’s greatest achievement as a manager – he joined Wolfsburg in the summer of 2007, finished fifth in his first season and to qualify for the Europa League, and won the Bundesliga the next.
An astounding achievement for the German, who was soon snapped up by Schalke who wanted him to emulate his Wolfsburg heroics, and bring Schalke a Bundesliga title. And they came close. In their first season under Magath they finished 2nd but he was shown the door in his next season.
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Magath took two years before taking the Fulham job in February 2014. He had just 12 games to save Fulham from an imminent relegation from the Premier League and unsurprisingly, he failed to keep the team up.
Surprisingly, Magath took charge into next season and was convinced that he could take Fulham straight back up. But losing his opening four games in the Championship, he was shown the door by the Fulham board.
Austria Wien were rumoured to want the German next, and Spartak Mosow had reportedly offered him a contract. But both vacancies were filled and Magath’s next move would be in China, when he took to managers job at Shandong Luneng. He lasted just over fifty games in the Chinese Super League with Shandong but after finishing 6th in the 2017 domestic league, left the club.
He’s since been out of the game but just this week, Magath is reported to have applied for the vacant Hearts job. Could we see Magath make a comeback to the sport, and would he be a good fit for Scottish Football? Fulham fans will be tuning in to that one.