Hamann pays tribute to retiring international boss - One of the greatest

Otmar Hitzfeld Switzerland

Former Newcastle United, Liverpool and Manchester City midfielder Didi Hamann praised Ottmar Hitzfeld as the Switzerland manager announced his retirement.

Ottmar Hitzfeld called time on a glittering coaching career on Monday, announcing his retirement from the dugout after Switzerland’s round of 16 last-gasp defeat to Argentina.

“I will go on working for TV,” the 65-year-old told reporters after the Swiss bowed out of the World Cup on a 118th minute strike from Angel Di Maria.

“I don’t lose when I work on TV. I will have a quiet life now. My job as a coach has finished.

“I’m proud of my career. I’ve had some marvellous teams. It’s been a great honour and I have a heart full of emotion.”

The German leaves the game with an abundance of silverware from his 31 years as a manager, most notably two Champions League, seven Bundesliga and three DFB Pokal titles.

His second Champions League crown - with Bayern Munich in the 2001-02 campaign - puts him in an elite class with only four other tacticians ever to guide two different clubs to glory in Europe’s top competition.

Hitzfeld’s appointment to the Bayern post in 1998 coincided with the sale of Didi Hamann to Newcastle, the midfielder having represented the Munich outfit since the age of 16.

And the ex-German international has taken to Twitter to pay tribute to the retiring Switzerland boss, rueful at never having taken the pitch under the guise of his countryman during his playing days.

Hamann went on to ply his trade for Liverpool, Manchester City and MK Dons after departing Newcastle a year on from leaving Hitzfeld’s Bayern.

Hitzfeld was sacked by Die Roten in 2004 but would later return for the 2007-2008 season, and has spent the last six years in charge of the Swiss national team.

FIFA World Cup 2018FIFA 2018 World Cup Russia - click here for all of our coverage...

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for NEWCASTLE UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch