Jorg Sievers: Former pupil Samuel Radlinger gives insight into new Hearts assistant's techniques
German expected to bring 'fun' training sessions to Tynecastle club
Jorg Sievers has been backed to flourish in his new role as Hearts’ assistant manager after stepping out of his comfort zone to become Daniel Stendel’s No.2.
The 54-year-old German moved to Edinburgh earlier this month to be reunited with his long-time friend and colleague after 30 years as a goalkeeper and latterly a coach with Hannover 96
Sievers’ main coaching experience to date has been as a goalkeeping coach but he has been promoted to the role of assistant by Stendel, whom he played and coached with in Lower Saxony.
Barnsley goalkeeper Samuel Radlinger, who worked closely with Sievers at Hannover between 2011 and 2019, believes his former mentor will take the change from goalie coach to assistant in his stride.
“I worked with Jorg for almost eight years at Hannover and we have a very good relationship,” Radlinger told the Evening News. “I’m very happy for him that he has this opportunity to work at a big club like Hearts. He was always my goalkeeper coach at Hannover but you can tell that he understands football very well so I’m very sure he will be a good assistant to Daniel. He will bring a lot of knowledge and experience because he was at Hannover for 30 years in total and had a lot of success in his time as a player. He has worked with so many great players.”
Sievers coached several highly-regarded goalkeepers at Hannover, most notably the late Robert Enke and Ron Zieler, who was part of Germany’s 2014 World Cup-winning squad. Radlinger loved working with Sievers and believes his personality can help galvanise a beleaguered Hearts squad in their battle against relegation.
“We had very good goalkeeping training under Jorg and if you watched the goalkeepers from Hannover, you would see that he made many good goalkeepers,” said Austrian Radlinger, who left Hannover to join Stendel at Barnsley last summer. “The training was always high quality but he also made sure it was fun. He’s very good with players in terms of how he speaks to them and he can also bring some fun to the team which is very important when the team is down at the bottom of the table. I’m certain the Hearts players will enjoy working under him.”
The move to Hearts represents Sievers’ first notable employment in football at any club other than Hannover, whom he joined as a player in 1989. Radlinger isn’t surprised that it was the lure of working with Stendel that ultimately led him away from the club at which he earned legendary status.
“Me and Jorg speak every two or three weeks,” said Radlinger. “I messaged him to congratulate him on joining Hearts and I will speak to him in the coming days. I’ve not spoken to him yet about why he chose to go to Hearts but I think after spending his whole working life at Hannover, he will feel that Daniel has offered him a big opportunity to see and discover something new. After such a long time at Hannover, he will probably have thought ‘ok, that’s enough, I need to try something different.’ Another reason will be that he loves to work with Daniel. Jorg and Daniel had a very good relationship at Hannover. Even when Daniel worked here at Barnsley, they were always on the phone to each other. The last time I spoke to Jorg Sievers on the phone, he was at Daniel’s place. They are very good friends.”