World Cup top-scorer Klose re­tires at 38

Kuwait Times - - FRONT PAGE -

Ger­many’s pro­lific Miroslav Klose, the all-time World Cup top-scorer, an­nounced his re­tire­ment yes­ter­day at the age of 38.

The striker, Ger­many’s record scorer with 71 goals in 137 in­ter­na­tion­als, was with­out a club af­ter his Lazio con­tract ex­pired last sea­son and he will now join the na­tional side’s coach­ing staff. Klose hit a record 16th goal in World Cup fi­nals dur­ing the 7-1 semi-fi­nal thrash­ing of hosts Brazil two years ago, which saw him over­take for­mer Brazil star Ronaldo.

Ger­many went on to win the ti­tle in Klose’s last game for his coun­try, but he con­tin­ued in the Ital­ian league with Lazio.

Klose will join Ger­many’s coach­ing staff af­ter an in­vi­ta­tion from head coach Joachim Loew and will be on the bench along­side Loew for the 2018 World Cup qual­i­fier away to San Marino on Novem­ber 11 and the friendly four days later against Italy in Mi­lan.

He will com­plete an in­di­vid­ual train­ing pro­gramme with the goal of em­bark­ing on a coach­ing ca­reer, the Ger­man Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (DFB) says. “I cel­e­brated my big­gest suc­cesses in the na­tional team, the time was won­der­ful and re­mains un­for­get­table so I am happy to be able to re­turn to the DFB,” said Poland-born Klose.

“The idea has been grow­ing in the last few months to stay on the pitch, but with a new per­spec­tive, mainly as a coach.

“To be able to read a game, to pre­pare my­self metic­u­lously, to de­velop strate­gies and tac­tics-that had al­ready re­ally in­ter­ested me as a player. “I am very grate­ful to Jogi Loew and (DFB di­rec­tor) Hansi Flick for this op­por­tu­nity and chance to sharpen my prac­ti­cal skills.”

Loew, 56, who ex­tended his con­tract as head coach un­til 2020 on Mon­day, said he was de­lighted to wel­come the “de­pend­able” Klose into his back­room staff. “He is a role model, as a hu­man be­ing and an ath­lete, who gives his all for the team and its suc­cess,” said Loew, Ger­man head coach since 2006. “We want to sup­port him in the DFB on his path for be­com­ing a coach. “I am cer­tain we (the back­room staff), as well as the play­ers, will ben­e­fit greatly from his pres­ence and par­tic­i­pa­tion.” Loew’s for­mer as­sis­tant Flick, now the DFB’s di­rec­tor of sport, said keep­ing Klose’s ex­pe­ri­ence was vi­tal.

“For foot­ball as a whole it is an ab­so­lute win if some­one like Miroslav Klose de­cides to work as a coach and to con­tinue to work for the DFB,” said Flick.

Klose made his Bun­desliga de­but in 2000 with Kais­er­slautern and went on to play for Werder Bre­men, Bay­ern Mu­nich and Lazio. He scored 121 goals in 307 matches in Ger­many’s top flight and man­aged 68 goals in 173 Serie A games dur­ing five years with Lazio, who he joined in 2011. His fi­nal ap­pear­ance for Ger­many was in the 2014 World Cup fi­nal win over Ar­gentina af­ter ex­tra time at Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Mara­cana sta­dium. Just be­fore the tour­na­ment, he be­came Ger­many’s all-time top-scorer in a 6-1 warm-up friendly win over Ar­me­nia.

He net­ted his 69th goal to break Gerd Mueller’s record of 68 goals, though Mueller’s phe­nom­e­nal feat was in only 62 ap­pear­ances, for West Ger­many — AFP

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kuwait

© PressReader. All rights reserved.