Nationaltrainer als Bundesverdienstkreuzträger

Here’s a little bit of trivia for you: who is the only Nationaltrainer to have been awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz – the Federal Cross of Merit – for something other than his work with the Nationalmannschaft? Answer: Jupp Derwall, who received his award for the work he did in Turkey and its impact on German-Turkish relations.

It is perhaps rather telling that Derwall – long seen as the black sheep of the nine post-war Nationaltrainers – did not receive the award for his seven-year tenure in charge of the German national team, as did all of those before and after; while for example Franz Beckenbauer received his second award for taking the Mannschaft to the runners-up spot in Mexico in 1986 (he had won his first as a player in 1976), Derwall was not even rewarded for the European Championship victory in 1980. Perhaps the person making the decisions didn’t like Häuptling Silberlocke’s style of football.

The only two Nationaltrainers not to have received the award are Dr. Otto Nerz (whose career predated the current Federal Republic) and “Sir” Erich Ribbeck, who is no doubt expecting some sort of recognition for his part in increasing the sales of Piz Buin in the Balearic Islands.

The Bundesverdienstkreuz (full name, Verdienstorden der Bundesrepublik Deutschland) has eight grades in ascending order:

Verdienstmedaille (Medal)
Verdienstkreuz am Bande (Cross)
Verdienstkreuz I. Klasse (Officer’s Cross)
Großes Verdienstkreuz (Commander’s Cross or Grand Cross)
Großes Verdienstkreuz mit Stern (Knight Commander’s Cross or Grand Cross with Star)
Großes Verdienstkreuz mit Stern und Schulterband (Grand Cross with Star and Sash)
Großkreuz (Grand Cross 1st class)
Sonderstufe des Großkreuzes (Grand Cross special class)

Here’s the list of all of the Nationaltrainers who have won one or more grades of the Bundesverdienstkreuz, and the date of the award(s):

Sepp Herberger: Verdienstkreuz I. Klasse (1962), Großes Verdienstkreuz (1967)
Helmut Schön: Großes Verdienstkreuz (1974)
Jupp Derwall: Verdienstkreuz I. Klasse (1989)
Franz Beckenbauer: Verdienstkreuz am Bande (1976), Verdienstkreuz I. Klasse (1986), Großes Verdienstkreuz (2006)
Berti Vogts: Verdienstkreuz I. Klasse (1996)
Rudi Völler: Verdienstkreuz am Bande (2002)
Jürgen Klinsmann: Verdienstkreuz am Bande (2006)
Joachim Löw: Verdienstkreuz am Bande (2010)

Nationaltrainer als Bundesverdienstkreuzträger

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