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Bayern legend Lahm braced to become new head of German football as vacancy opens up

14:55 WAT 01/04/2019
Philipp Lahm Bayern Munich
Reinhard Grindel, the current president of the DFB, is expected to head into retirement and clear the path for a new man to take the helm

Reinhard Grindel is preparing to step down as president of the German Football Association (DFB) and head into retirement, Goal and Spox understands, with Bayern Munich legend Philipp Lahm considered to be a favoured choice as his successor.

Former Member of Parliament Grindel has only been in his current post since May 2016, having previously worked in a role as treasurer.

His reign has been fraught with difficulty, with unwelcome headlines made and plenty of criticism aimed in his direction.

In the aftermath of a troubled 2018 World Cup campaign for Joachim Low’s defending champions, Mesut Ozil took aim at the establishment in a statement to announce his international retirement.

The Arsenal midfielder suggested that he had been made a scapegoat for the failings of others, responding to certain comments made against him by saying: "If we win, I'm German. If we lose, I'm an immigrant."

Grindel bore much of the wrath from Ozil supporters, forcing him to concede that he should have been more supportive of a senior professional during a difficult time.

The moment had passed, though, and an unfortunate aftermath saw German football dragged through the dirt.

Further pressure has since been piled on Grindel, with a report from German publication Spiegel released on Friday making allegations of supposed extra income being generated

He stands accused of having concealed to other members of the DFB presidium payments made to him.

Questions of his leadership were then raised during a DFB Presidential Committee teleconference on Sunday, with it considered that lurches from one crisis to the next are down to a lack of guidance from the top.

Grindel has now lost almost all of his supporters, with none of his 11 vice-presidents offering words of encouragement when quizzed by Bild.

He also boasts few backers at the DFB headquarters in Frankfurt.

As a result, he is now expected to walk away, with Goal and Spox of the understanding that he could hand in his resignation by the end of the week.

With a vacancy about to open, the search for a suitable successor is already being pieced together.

Moving swiftly and decisively is considered to be of paramount importance for the DFB, as they seek to repair their image and open a new, more positive era.

Reports, such as those from ZDF, suggest that former Bayern captain Lahm is the preferred candidate for a prestigious post.

The 35-year-old, who skippered his country to global glory in 2014 and retired at the end of the 2016-17 campaign, has been working as an ambassador for the DFB’s Euro 2024 bid.