German Bundesliga side Hamburger SV has finally found a new Director of Sports in Dane Frank Arnesen, who will join them from English Premier League giants FC Chelsea in the new season. This ends the never ending HSV story of finding a replacement to Dietmar Beiersdorfer who left the club to join Austria's Red Bulls Salzburg two summers ago.
Since then the search has been a major failure and somewhat of an embarrassment for one of the biggest clubs in Germany. First after playing a season without a Director of Sports it had been finalised that after the 2010 FIFA World Cup Germany's head scout and analyst Urs Siegenthaler would join, but then he remained with the German FA (DFB). So the club appointed former player Bastian Reinhardt as their new Director of Sports, but the rookie hasn't been able to convince the club management and fans that he is ready for the tough assignment. Then this winter it was somewhat final that Germany's Director of Sports Matthias Sammer would join the North German club, once more the deal fell through at the last moment.
Now the club has been able to make the big signing it was looking for in 54 year old Arnesen, who has signed a three year contract. And he will bring Chelsea's chief scout Lee Congerton with him to become Hamburg's new technical director. Bastian Reinhardt will remain at the club and work under Arnesen as part of a expanded management team.
"I am delighted that we have found this fantastic solution," commented Hamburg's chairman Ernst-Otto Rieckhoff. "Frank Arnesen has not only the aptitude that is very meaningful to us for our future thanks to his experience as a manager at top clubs in Europe, but in particular due to his focus on youth development."
Arnesen experience is something which Hamburg will want to build on. His off the field career started in 1991 as assistant coach to Bobby Robson at PSV Eindhoven before he went on to become PSV's sporting director in 1994. Arnesen remained at the club for 10 years before he left for England. In 2004 he joined as Tottenham Hotspurs as Director of Sports before he switched to London rivals FC Chelsea a year later. Now he leaves southwest London after he had not extended his contract beyond the summer.
"HSV is a special club with a great tradition and fantastic conditions to work in. I am convinced that we will develop something huge with the energy we have got and with the right decisions," Arnesen said after the contract was signed.