E.Felix Koslowski will certainly not miss ines in his future work as a volleyball coach, after he recently finished his second job as coach of the women’s national team. The battle term “national coach bonus”, which came up again and again when he played with SSC Palmberg Schwerin in the Bundesliga and a controversial referee decision was in favor of his team. “That hurt me a lot,” says the 37-year-old. “I have always tried to act loyally and fairly.” But over the course of his six years as a national coach and club coach, he put on a thick coat and internalized that the accusation was not linked to himself, but was often used as a pseudo-argument when it supposedly fit. It still annoyed him.
In the area of tension between the Volleyball Bundesliga and the German Volleyball Association (DVV), Koslowski received the signal some time ago that no national coaches should be employed who also work in a club in personal union. Of course, men’s national coach Andrea Giani also coaches the club team of Volley Modena in Italy. And DVV President René Hecht told this newspaper that there are only top coaches on the international market who ride twice. Solving the question of succession for Koslowski would otherwise be in the hands of sports director Christian Dünnes.
For Koslowski, who had worked for the association for 15 years, the decision still had to be made: Schwerin or Germany? “I’ve been thinking a lot over the past two months,” he says in the phone call he is making from Portugal. There his women from Schwerin will compete in the second round of the CEV Cup at AJM Porto this Wednesday. The club volleyball, as always in the autumn / winter season, is in full swing.
He had many conversations with the club and association, players and, last but not least, his wife, says Koslowski. The passionate volleyball coach, who ended his career as a player early in favor of the job on the line, was born in Schwerin, lives there and is married to a woman from Schwerin. The couple have four children. “The family had to stand back for 15 years,” he says: “Now we can finally book a summer vacation.” Because in summer, the logic of the game plan in volleyball, the national teams contest their tournaments.
With that, Koslowski gives up his dream of participating in the Olympics. In qualifying for Tokyo, the German team was in the final of the European elimination, but lost to Turkey in the fight for the only place reserved for Europe. “At that time we showed our best volleyball,” recalls Louisa Lippmann, who once matured into a world-class player in Schwerin and has since made a name for herself as a diagonal attacker in the top leagues in Europe. “Felix was a very big supporter and confidence trainer for me,” she says. But now it is important to look ahead, because she also has to consider: “After we missed the Olympic qualification, we no longer achieved the quality.”
A fresh breeze in Schwerin
The most recent EM 2021 ended disappointingly with a defeat against the Netherlands in the round of 16. A new appointment to the national coaching post could have a positive effect, says Koslowski himself. On the other hand, he remembers where he took over the team. After the era of Giovanni Guidetti, under whose leadership the German women won two European silver medals with Koslowski as co-trainer, the pillars of the team had ceased. The rebuilding began with players who often sat on the bench themselves in the Bundesliga. Today Germany ranks eleventh in the world. The first ten have the best chances of qualifying for the Olympics after the changed mode. The DVV could “not thank Felix enough for the very good and self-sacrificing work over the past 15 years,” said sports director Dünnes – but also emphasized that a new appointment would bring a breath of fresh air.
After all, Koslowski already feels a promising breeze in Schwerin: “The club is developing very well,” he says. The hall is being expanded, the clubhouse is being rebuilt, and the entire infrastructure is being improved. And the “very young” team is also developing, even if position seven in the table does not currently meet the requirements of the twelve-time champions. Incidentally, Koslowski does not fear financial losses. His main salary always came from the club. He had only ever made verbal agreements with the association. “I never had a contract. That wasn’t important to me either. “
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