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Jurgen Klinsmann praises hometown Bundesliga, hits out on other leagues

Jurgen Klinsmann

U.S. Soccer men’s national team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann listens during an interview Friday, April 5, 2013, in New York. Tim Howard remains the No. 1 American goalkeeper despite a pair of strong performance by Brad Guzan in World Cup qualifiers last month. Speaking Friday as the U.S. Soccer Federation marked its 100th anniversary, Klinsmann said “Tim is No. 1 undoubtedly.” Klinsmann added, however, that he’s pleased to see Guzman making a breakthrough and starting at Aston Villa. The coach says “the level he played those two games just makes you feel a lot better now having such a strong No. 2.” (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

AP

United States Men’s National Team head coach Jurgen Klinsmann praised the Bundesliga in light of their recent success, saying he thinks it will “be among the top three leagues for the long term” while he also believes the other top leagues are “struggling bigtime.”

In an interview with Reuters, Klinsmann said of the recent success, “We all hope [the Bundesliga] will be the number one league in Europe for many years. It’s obviously not always going to be two German teams in the final but I think we’ll continually see one of our teams in the final four. I hope we’ll see a German team going far every year in the Champions League. There are many components that play a role in that success.”

Klinsmann was born in Goppingen, West Germany and played in the Bundesliga for Bayern Munich and VfB Stuttgart. The 48-year-old also managed in the Bundesliga with Bayern for a year, while also managing the German national squad from 2004-2006.

Klinsmann continued to praise the sport in his home country, discussing how healthy the Bundesliga is and how far it’s come. “The clubs are really healthy in Germany and the infrastructure coming out of 2006 (World Cup) plays a role in that too. There are big, beautiful and safe stadiums. You see younger and older people in the stadiums now, girls, women, and you see families. It wasn’t always like that a decade ago. A lot has changed in a wonderful way.”

Klinsmann didn’t stop there, however, saying how some of the other leagues in Europe may be in trouble both on the pitch and financially. “I think there are other countries that are struggling big time. Italy and England are struggling big time. Even the bigger teams have so much debt that it’s scary. I think in the long run Spain will jeopardise its foundation if there are only two teams controlling the whole market. It’s not going to work.”

German clubs Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund will play for the Champions League final in Wembley Stadium on May 25.