The German Hockey Federation has appointed Kais al Saadi, as the new national head coach of the German Men’s Hockey Team.
The Hamburger takes over the men’s team – from interim coach Markus Weise who came on board only for the Olympic qualifiers.
In the summer of 2018, Kais had resigned after winning the German Men’s Indoor Championships as Bundesliga coach of the UHC Hamburg and focused on his job as Head of Human Resources and Legal at a steel trading company.
Kais has also been the assistant coach of several male junior national teams of the DHB, until he was assistant of Michael Behrmann in the German women’s team from 2009 to the 2012 Olympics.
With the women’s indoor national team, al Saadi won the 2011 World Cup in Poland as national head coach.
In 2016, he won the European Indoor Championships in Prague as co-coach alongside Stefan Kermas with the men.
Al Saadi has not lost touch with international hockey even after his retirement. At the request of the Chinese Hockey Association, he works part-time as a strategic consultant there. Al Saadi will also give up this activity in favor of the DHB by spring 2020 at the latest.
Commenting on his appointment, DHB Vice President, Marie-Theres Gnauert, said:
“Kais Al Saadi has many years of varied and successful coaching activities. For us, he is the right person for the Tokyo 2020 campaign, because he brings the necessary self-confidence and assertiveness. He enjoys both national recognition and international experience and thus fulfills the ideal conditions for successfully preparing the Honamas for the Olympic Games.” Gnauert said.
Agreeing to Gnauert, DHB Sports Director Heino Knuf said;
“Kais Al Saadi is an outstanding cast for this task, because he brings everything that you need for the national coaching office. He has been training many talents in the UHC with great success over the last 25 years and at the same time accompanied our national teams as assistant coach.”
Speaking on his appointment, Coach Kais said he is well prepared to take up the challenge of taking the Honamas in the right direction for Tokyo 2020.
“Taking HONAMAS in the direction of Tokyo 2020 is an honourable and extremely challenging task for me. For this I had to leave my current job, which was actually intended as a career after the hockey lifestyle, on the side. I am very grateful to my employer, for allowing me this step with great courtesy and goodwill. Fortunately, many people were able to understand the appeal of the Olympics. I will not forget that,”said al Saadi.
Now al Saadi, as national coach, wants to stabilize HONAMAS, which has been greatly rejuvenated since Rio 2016, and to compete with them for a successful olympic year.
“I really hope that I can make a difference with my experience in Bundesliga and international hockey. I have known many of the players since eternity. Although I come as an outsider, but at the same time I am an insider – this is a good starting position from which I would like to do something for the men’s national team of my home country. “