It doesn't take long for something to give when there is a conflict between management and a coach in the Bundesliga. In Freiburg, sporting director Dirk Dufner had to go, but he may not be unemployed for long.
The German newspaper Bild originally carried the story on Monday that Dufner was being let go by Freiburg, who are currently fifth in the Bundesliga and would qualify for a spot in the Europa League next season.
Dufner told Bild that the decision was mutual: "It was exemplary. I can leave here with a clear conscious. Now it's time for something new."
Speculation is now rife that Dufner will now move to take over the sporting director position vacated by Jörg Schmadtke at Hannover 96.
It's been no secret that Dufner and Freiburg's manager, Christian Streich, haven't been getting along as of late. While the team is currently in position to grab a spot in the European competition, they were eliminated last week in the semifinal of the German Cup at the hands of Stuttgart. They then lost again to the same team over the weekend in the Bundesliga.
They are still serious contenders for the Europa League and outside shots for the Champions League, but those milestones would come with a catch: a good chunk of the team's talent is leaving at the end of the season.
This was a cause of consternation for Streich.
In his six years at Freiburg, Dufner helped the team to its first-ever, five-year stint in the Bundesliga and secured a 12-million-euro ($15.6 million) deal for the transfer of the club's star striker, Papiss Demba Cisse, to the English side Newcastle last year.
mz/tm (SID, dpa)