October 28 – Christian Seifert, one of the most influential figures in European football administration, has announced he is stepping step down as the German Football League’s (DFL) chief executive when his contract expires in 2022.
Seifert, a familiar face at football business conferences across the globe, has held the post since 2005 but said he wanted to “begin a new professional chapter” elsewhere.
“These are challenging times that demand that we provide for clarify and dependability. That is true for the DFL as a whole and also for my own professional ambitions,” said Seifert.
“Hence I … will leave the DFL at the conclusion of my contract in June 2022. Until then, I will of course continue to focus on current and future challenges in my DFL positions with the greatest ambition and full commitment.”
Seifert, who is also vice president of the German Football Association (DFB), has overseen a period of significant growth for German football, not least in overseas markets.
In 2012, The Bundesliga opened its first international office in Singapore to explore new commercial opportunities and now also has offices in Beijing and New York.
Most recently, he masterminded the Bundesliga’s restart during the coronavirus pandemic before other major European leagues followed suit.
Often ahead of the game when it comes to strategy, Seifert helped pioneer widespread coronavirus testing of players and staff, a model that has since been copied by others.
Peter Peters, the DFL’s supervisory board chairman, said that the body would take its time to find a successor.
“The change at the top of the DFL means a turning point,” said Peters. “Christian Seifert has done outstanding work for more than 15 years and has thus made a significant contribution to the success of the Bundesliga and 2.Bundesliga.”
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