Gladbach and Max Eberl: Congratulations - Sport

On December 20, 2020, football manager Max Eberl had reached the peak of his career. Had just before Borussia Monchengladbach made it into the round of 16 in the Champions League for the first time, the maker Eberl had a trusted coach at his side in Marco Rose - and that Sunday the sporting director signed a brilliantly endowed contract until 2026. To be able to take a breather, but also to In order to enjoy the feelings of happiness that Gladbach's successes brought him that winter, Eberl also took an unusual break and was released from duty for January 2021.

In the midst of this idyll, Borussia suddenly and unexpectedly began to collapse in sporting terms - through a chain of events that have repercussions to the present day. This week, the Gladbach fan umbrella organization published a harsh open letter in which he Max Eberl accuses of hypocrisy. His appearance at the press conference in January 2022, with which Eberl said goodbye to Gladbach, was "a spectacle", it is said. The letter suggests that Eberl's tears could have helped him get out of the Gladbach contract - to switch to RB Leipzig soon with some distance.

Just this Saturday (6.30 p.m.) Leipzig is making a guest appearance in Mönchengladbach – with Marco Rose, of all people, as the new RB coach. It may be that the fans will also let the public know at this home game what they think of the expected reunion of their former heroes Eberl and Rose at the suspected competitor Leipzig. Of the table football assumes that Eberl will start his service at RB at the beginning of the new year.

Eberl received a lot of praise for his courage to admit his overload - today it is discussed whether his tears were real

This story of an estrangement began on a Shrove Monday. On February 15, 2021, the coach informed Rose that he was leaving Gladbach for Dortmund the following summer. Eberl protested that Rose was not thrown out immediately because of this. But the Gladbachers then lost seven competitive games in a row, were eliminated in the Champions League round of 16 and in the DFB Cup and slipped in the Bundesliga from all European Cup places. Eberl wanted to make a fresh start with coach Adi Hütter, who was ripped off from Frankfurt for 7.5 million euros the following season, but planned transfers failed. The team did not cope well with Hütter's pressing football, they even got into relegation difficulties with the expensive coach.

Gladbach and Max Eberl: At his farewell press conference in January 2022, Max Eberl shed a few tears. "We no longer believe that you have been honest with us"now writes the Gladbach fan umbrella organization.

At his farewell press conference in January 2022, Max Eberl shed a few tears. "We no longer believe that you were honest with us," writes the Gladbach fan umbrella organization.

(Photo: Christian Verheyen/dpa)

A new assistant team manager caused additional resentment among the players: Max Eberl had installed his girlfriend here against the will of the rest of the board. At this point, the relationship with defense chief Matthias Ginter was also under a bad star, because Ginter, as he later revealed, had been told in the summer that he wanted to sell him. That had disappointed him.

The expiring contracts of important players also threatened to cause problems. Such contracts had to be extended or the players had to be sold. However, the financial situation of the Gladbacher had suffered from Corona, the loss of sales added up to 100 million euros. Eberl became more and more aware that Borussia's financial, personal and sporting situation was becoming problematic. He is said to have explored in the presidium whether there was a possibility of getting out of his contract. But they didn't want to give him up.

At the end of 2021, his girlfriend resigned as team manager - and in January there were rumors that Eberl wanted to quit after 13 years. He called in sick for several days. On January 28 of this year, Gladbach invited to a press conference at short notice, at which Eberl described in a tear-choked voice that he could no longer work and urgently needed a - this time longer - break.

Public sympathy was enormous. Eberl received a lot of praise for his courage to admit overload and to make it public. It was whispered in the club that his highly emotional speeches to the workforce and the team on the same day were strikingly identical, but the dominant insight was that he was not just tired of the Gladbach crisis, but actually exhausted. After all, he had managed the managerial job at Borussia for 13 years alone. In the event of success, a latent overload can perhaps still be endured, but in the event of failure and dwindling prospects it is hardly any longer.

It seems only a matter of time before Eberl signs with RB Leipzig

Eberl's tears were certainly not fake. Born in Lower Bavaria, he is built close to the water, even when the trainers Lucien Favre (2015) and Rose (2021) announced their farewells, he spoke with a cracked voice. Of course, his exhausted condition helped to escape the long-term commitments at Borussia. The club released him but didn't terminate the long-term contract on the assumption that Eberl would sooner or later return to work at another club. In this case, they didn't want to shrug their shoulders, they wanted to be involved financially.

Gladbach and Max Eberl: Marco Rose has now arrived in Leipzig, Eberl could soon follow him.

Marco Rose has now arrived in Leipzig, Eberl could soon follow him.

(Photo: Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

Now this transfer question really arises, because it seems only a matter of time before Eberl returns to football at RB Leipzig. The talks between RB managing director Oliver Mintzlaff, Gladbach's chief financial officer Stephan Schippers and Eberl's advisor Marc Kosicke are well advanced.

For Eberl, reuniting with coach Rose could feel like turning back time. Both could continue in Leipzig where they left off in Gladbach in 2021 - on better terms, of course. RB is a Champions League club with Champions League players and Champions League salaries.

It is no coincidence that the Gladbach fans published their open letter this week, at the end of which Leipzig are guests in Borussia Park. You write to Eberl: "How often have you told us internally how competition-distorting this construct (meant: RB, note.) and how much we all have to stick together against it." They accuse Eberl of having had contact with Leipzig before. "We no longer believe that you were honest with us at the end of your tenure at Borussia," they write, " the matter got a real taste and we can't wish you luck in your new job - on the contrary!"

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