German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has praised former national team coach Joachim Loew as “an innovator and visionary.”
Steinmeier paid tribute to Loew at a lunch reception at his Berlin residence on Wednesday, in a speech made available by the presidential office.
Loew led Germany to the 2014 World Cup title, the 2017 Confederations Cup, the Euro 2008 final, and three major event semi-finals during his 15-year reign 2006-2021.
“You gifted the people in our country many moments that will remain in the collective memory of our nation,” Steinmeier said.
“Today we honour an innovator and a visionary who brought German football back to the top in the world.”
Steinmaier also said that Loew’s team “reflected the diversity of our society” and its success has “changed the self-image of our country.”
“Above all, you showed us how much we can achieve together as different people when we are there for one another,” the head of state said.
“Joachim Loew and his players stand for a cosmopolitan and tolerant Germany, for a Germany that is not grumpy, grim and contemptuous, but friendly, confident and fair.”
Loew, who has rarely appeared in public since stepping down after Germany’s last-16 exit at Euro 2020 in summer, will get his official farewell from the German Football Federation DFB at next week’s World Cup qualifier against Liechtenstein.