South Korea’s Coach Klinsmann Mourns Passing of Franz Beckenbauer, His Mentor and ‘Father Figure’

Seoul: Jurgen Klinsmann, the German-born head coach of the South Korean men's national football team, expressed deep sorrow over the loss of Franz Beckenbauer, his former coach and a revered figure in German football. Beckenbauer passed away at age 78 in Austria, leaving a significant legacy in the world of football.

According to Yonhap News Agency, Klinsmann, while preparing for the Asian Football Confederation Asian Cup in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday, shared heartfelt words with his players about Beckenbauer's influence on his life and career. The KFA noted that Klinsmann was visibly emotional as he recalled the profound impact Beckenbauer had on him and his teammates.

Beckenbauer's death was initially reported to the German news agency dpa by his family, and later confirmed by the German football federation. Known as one of football's greatest players and managers, Beckenbauer achieved remarkable success, including winning the 1974 FIFA World Cup as captain of West Germany and coaching the country to victory in the 1990 World Cup, with Klinsmann playing a key role in the latter triumph. Beckenbauer was notably the first individual to win the World Cup both as a team captain and a head coach.

In a video message released by the KFA, Klinsmann described Beckenbauer as a monumental figure in German football, likening him to Brazilian legend Pele in terms of impact and acclaim. Klinsmann praised Beckenbauer's extraordinary abilities as a player and a coach, and his role in bringing the World Cup to Germany in 2006, which was fondly referred to as a "summer fairy tale" in Germany.

Klinsmann fondly remembered Beckenbauer for his personality, always being friendly, polite, and grateful. He emphasized Beckenbauer's role as a mentor and a father-like figure to the players of the 1990 FIFA World Cup champion West Germany team. Klinsmann concluded by acknowledging the deep sense of loss felt in the football world and in Germany, where Beckenbauer was considered the most charismatic sports leader of the past several decades.

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