(DPA). Participation in the Olympic Games should not have been a one-time high point for German basketball players. With new national coach Gordon Herbert, the national team seeks to establish itself permanently in the European and world elite.
“It is about winning medals. At the European Championships, at the World Cup, at the Olympics. Regardless of the tournament, « said Herbert on Monday, when he was introduced in Hagen as Heinrich Rodl’s successor. Rodal led the German team to the Olympics for the first time in 13 years, where the team failed to defeat Slovenia in the quarter-finals in Tokyo. After that, the contract with Rodal was not extended.
Herbert signed a two-year contract with the German Basketball Association with the option of one more year until 2024. Then the Olympic Games will take place in Paris – and Germany certainly should again. “It’s definitely the goal,” said the 62-year-old Canadian, who knows German basketball very well.
After all, Herbert worked in Würzburg, Frankfurt and Alba Berlin and therefore knows the Bundesliga inside out. “It’s definitely an advantage. I know all the coaches and most of the players,” said Herbert, who last worked for the national team in his home country of Canada.
He could continue to work there, but when the request came from Germany, Herbert did not hesitate for long. “It is an honor to be a part of German basketball,” said Herbert. “The association is highly professional, the infrastructure around the team is very good and we have excellent players. Many people are in the best phase of their careers and we have many promising players behind us.”
In addition to his Bundesliga experience, other positions in international basketball also spoke volumes for Herbert. “He also knows FIBA basketball and the NBA very well,” said DBB vice president Armin Andres. “It was important for us to hire an experienced coach. We didn’t want to do any experiments,” said DBB President Ingo Weiss. will work with.”
The European Championship 2022 is Herbert’s first major goal, with the preliminary round in Cologne and the final round in Berlin. Before that, there are still four time slots with games in World Cup qualification on the schedule, but the focus is certainly on the European Championship at home. After Germany were eliminated in the preliminary round in Berlin in 2015 despite the involvement of superstar Dirk Nowitzki, things should be better next year. “We want to be on the podium,” Herbert set the objective.
So that it really works, Herbert will immediately get to work. “I want to get to know the structures and the people as soon as possible,” said the Canadian, who will be relocating to Hagen, closer to the association headquarters. Herbert is scheduled to tour players from Germany, Europe and the United States in the coming weeks and months. “I want to speak to everyone personally and tell them: it is an honor to represent our country.”
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