The man at the next table has been listening for a while, but now he can not stand it anymore. Whether he should disturb for a short time, says the man from the next table to Andi Herzog, they had a mutual acquaintance, the aunt of Mr. Sowieso, the Andi Herzog certainly know. Look here, says the Andi Herzog and does almost believably as if he knows what it's all about. Yes, he is back home with the family at the moment, says Andi Herzog, but tomorrow morning his plane will go to Tel Aviv again.
"Are you all right with the Israelis?", The man from the next table wants to know. "Fits anyway," says Andi Herzog.
It's a nice Thursday afternoon in late September, Andreas Herzog is sitting in the k.u.k. Hofzuckerbäckerei Heiner in Perchtoldsdorf near Vienna. Of course, the people know him in this café, whose name was not changed by the editors. They find that he has always remained one of them, even when he became a pro at Rapid Wien and later had these successes with the Piefkes over there, at Bayern Munich and even further up in this Bremen. In the k.u.k. Hofzuckerbäckerei Heiner there are enormously pink Punschkrapferl, however, Andi Herzog says they are a bit small.
Twenty-four hours later, Andi Herzog is sitting in Tel Aviv in the room of an apartment complex with a bomb-proof room. It is the room that the estate agent showed him when he first visited it. The Gaza Strip is less than 100 kilometers away, and when Herzog once sat down to lunch with his Austrian assistant coach Klaus Lindenberger, his cell phone began to hum. "Coach, are you okay?" People asked, "Yeah, well, why not," he wrote back. Then people wrote that a rocket was apparently flying from the Gaza Strip towards Tel Aviv. "Klaus, what do you do?" Herzog asked his colleague, and then they continued to eat.
Andreas Herzog, 51, currently lives in two different worlds. On Thursday evening in the Ernst Happel Stadium, both worlds meet. The Austrian national team denies a home game in the European Championship qualification, but that is rather indirectly the reason why Andreas Herzog will be there.
You have to know that Herzog holds an Austrian record, never has anyone been that often Not became Austrian national coach like him. Another record: never has anyone been so often nearly, Andreas Herzog has to calculate how many times he was already talking to the Austrian federation as a team leader, "three times ?, well: four times," he says.
Concrete promises did not exist, says Herzog between two bites Punschkrapferl, with which the Krapferl is completely consumed, "but I was always signaled to the Austrian Association: We push you, you are now soon off They knew that if all else fails, and we can not find another, we'll just take the Duke, and I've probably never been the top candidate. "
He played more internationals than Krankl and Schneckerl Prohaska
They have always taken another one anyway. First Karel Brückner, a Czech, then Didi Constantini, an Austrian, then Marcel Koller, a Swiss. And last but not least: Franco Foda. A Piefke.
Andreas Herzog has been coaching the Israeli national team since August 2018, and with this team he is now coming to an away match in a stadium that would probably not complain if they called it Andi Herzog Stadium. Herzog has played 103 caps for Austria, more than the legendary Hans Krankl or Schneckerl Prohaska, whom the Internet, by the way, ridiculously claims to be Herbert. Andi Herzog was too young to play when the Austrians defeated the Piefkes at the 1978 World Cup in Cordoba, but he has long since overtaken the legends. Herzog is Austria's record national player, ahead of Toni Polster, of whom the same internet claims his name is Anton.
If Herzog were an Austrian national coach, he might now have to deal with the legends who always hide so beautifully poisoned Punchkrapferl in their newspaper columns (due to a chance that has not yet been investigated there are about as many boulevard columns in Austria as there are heroes of Cordoba). The Austrians are third in the European Championship qualifying group G, behind the favored Poles and the Slovenians who are not at all favored. Only two teams qualify, this scenario provides material for wonderful Viennese coffee house prose.
Andreas Herzog, the national coach of Israel, was unable to train properly the day before the big game, only in the evening, after sunset. From Tuesday to Wednesday night, his players have committed Yom Kippur, the highest Jewish holiday on which fasting and rest are scheduled. The football coach Herzog, who was previously used to only football logic in his football life, has almost alone on Wednesday prepared for this game, which must win his team very urgently, if they want to have a chance in the European Championship qualifying. While the Jewish players in the squad visited a synagogue in Vienna, the coach once again watched a few football videos and once again checked his tactics for the game.
Andreas Herzog has a job in which he has to take care of more than the day before the match as to what Schneckerl Prohaska means.
. (tagsToTranslate) Football (t) European Football Championship (t) Israel (t) Uefa (t) Austria (t) Sports (t) Süddeutsche Zeitung