Japan’s J League side Kashima Antlers sack head coach René Weiler

Japan's J League side Kashima Antlers sack head coach René Weiler. Image: Kashima Antlers/Official

SWISS football coach René Weiler has been sacked by Japan’s J League side Kashima Antlers on Sunday, August 7.

“As a result of discussing the current situation and future direction of football with coach René Weiler, we have decided to terminate his contract with mutual consent,” the J League side wrote.

“In addition, Dragan Murgia (coach) and Manuel Kreckler (physical coach) will also retire after the contract is terminated.”

Before joining the J League side, René Weiler was head coach of Swiss professional football club St. Gallen between October 9, 2007 and October 28, 2007, before enjoying a three-year stay as head coach of Swiss side Aarau from April 13, 2011 to May 21, 2014.

After that, he was head coach at German side 1. FC Nürnberg, Belgian side RSC Anderlecht and Swiss side FC Luzern.

In 2019, Weiler became the manager of Egyptian club Al Ahly before leaving on October 1, 2020, after winning the Egyptian Premier League and Egyptian Super Cup.

He was appointed by Kashima Antlers in 2022.

Fans have reacted to the news on social media.

“I would like you to tell me what kind of discussions you had about the future direction, as much as you can. There is no way I can be satisfied with just five lines of text regarding the cancellation of the contract,” one person wrote.

Another person said: “I’m really ashamed. Only disappointment. I cry.”

“First of all, thank you, Rene. And everyone at the front desk, why did you invite Rene-san? Isn’t it to change? Even though it’s gone, I’m worried about the future without much reinforcement,” another wrote.

Kashima Antlers’ CEO Fumiaki Koizumi wrote: “Today, the contract has been terminated by mutual agreement with coach Rene. It was an agreement that was reached after comprehensively judging and discussing the results, and I am grateful to Director Rene for his work thus far.

“In addition, this situation is not only a problem for supervision, but also for the strengthening department and management, and there are things that need to be improved.”

He added: “Once again, all the players and team staff will unite as we head towards the league and the Emperor’s Cup. We will fight without giving up, so please support us.”

One Japanese journalist replied to Koizumi’s tweet and asked: “What fans-supporters want to know is what was “comprehensively judged, discussed and agreed”. Starting with the results” can only be taken as a pretext. I think Kashima is a club that represents the J-League, and as one who covered the ACL and CWC, I would like to ask for as specific an explanation as possible.”

They added: “Of course, it’s not about the content of the contract, but about the direction. There is no need for confidentiality with individuals.”

Weiler’s record at Kashima Antlers

J1 league total: 24 games – 11 wins – 7 draws – 6 losses
League Cup total: 8 games – 5 wins – 1 draw – 2 losses
Emperor’s Cup total: 3 games – 3 wins
Official game total: 35 games – 19 wins – 8 draws – 8 losses


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Written by

Matthew Roscoe

Originally from the UK, Matthew is based on the Costa Blanca and is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]

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