Former Hamburg coach Thomas Doll signed on for another relegation fight, agreeing on Tuesday to take over Borussia Dortmund. But can he succeed where his predecessor Jürgen Röber failed?
After failing in Hamburg, Doll is on a mission to succeed in Dortmund
Borussia management announced the hiring of Doll, 40, just one day after interim coach Röber threw in the towel. He inherits a team that is currently just one point of the relegation zone.
Doll himself was fired from his last job with Hamburg in February after that team had slipped to the bottom of the table. Without Doll, Hamburg has made a good start turning its season around. Doll will be hoping Dortmund can do the same -- with him at the helm.
But he'll have his hands full with a squad whose competitive attitude has been questioned and which has already gone through two other coaches this season.
Dortmund have suffered a series of bad losses in recent weeks
Announcing his decision to leave on Monday, Röber said, "I finally came to the conclusion that not everyone in this team realizes the seriousness of the situation."
Röber took over from Dutch coach Bert van Marwijk, who was fired in December, but Dortmund went on to lose six of eight matches under his direction.
The right man for the job?
"We're convinced that he's the right coach for our current situation," Dortmund commercial manager Hans-Joachim Watzke said after Doll's appointment was announced.
"Dortmund didn't have to try hard to convince me," Doll said. "As a young coach it's great when you get contacted by a club like this."
Jürgen Röber's tenure at Dortmund lasted all of eight matches
But Doll was only hired after ex-Bayern coach Felix Magath and Dortmund legend Matthias Sammer had first turned down the job.
The situation at Dortmund is now similar to the 1999-2000 season, when the club twice changed coaches in a bid to avoid relegation.
Michael Skibbe, now with Leverkusen, and Bernd Krauss were both dismissed during the season before veteran Udo Lattek successfully joined Sammer in a joint role for the last five matches of the campaign.
Doll's contract runs until June 2008, ending speculation that former Bielefeld coach Thomas van Heesen would be taking over at the end of this season.