Open main menu

David Wagner (born 19 October 1971) is a professional football manager and former player who is the coach of Schalke 04.

David Wagner
David Wagner 2018.jpg
Wagner as head coach of Huddersfield Town in 2018
Personal information
Full name David Wagner[1]
Date of birth (1971-10-19) 19 October 1971 (age 47)[1]
Place of birth Geinsheim am Rhein, West Germany[1]
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)[1]
Playing position Striker
Club information
Current team
Schalke 04 (manager)
Youth career
SV Geinsheim
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1990–1991 Eintracht Frankfurt 1 (0)
1991–1995 Mainz 05 94 (19)
1995–1997 Schalke 04 29 (2)
1997–1999 FC Gütersloh 49 (7)
1999 Waldhof Mannheim 5 (0)
1999–2002 Darmstadt 98 76 (21)
2002–2004 TSG Weinheim
2004–2006 Germania Pfungstadt
National team
1992 Germany U21 1 (0)
1996–1998 United States 8 (0)
Teams managed
2011–2015 Borussia Dortmund II
2015–2019 Huddersfield Town
2019– Schalke 04
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Wagner grew up in West Germany and made his professional debut with Eintracht Frankfurt in 1990 and played as a forward for several clubs in the first and second divisions of German football. The son of an American father and German mother, Wagner played for the United States national team, earning eight caps between 1996 and 1998.

From 2011 to 2015, he managed Borussia Dortmund II. He left in November 2015 to take the job at Huddersfield Town, whom he guided to the Premier League via the 2017 EFL Championship play-off Final.

Early lifeEdit

Wagner was born in Geinsheim am Rhein, Trebur, Hesse.[2] His father is American.[3][4] His mother is German.[5] His father was a member of the U.S. military.[3][4]

Playing careerEdit

In 1996 Wagner was recruited along with fellow Bundesliga player Michael Mason by manager Steve Sampson into the United States national team despite never having seen them play. Sampson had been recommended Wagner and Mason and made aware of their American background by U.S. player Thomas Dooley, who like them was also raised in Germany. Wagner had a United States passport, but had played for Germany's U-18 and U-21 teams earlier in his career. This gave him additional credibility with Sampson but posed a problem as he risked being considered ineligible to play for the United States.

Wagner made his debut in a friendly 3–1 win over El Salvador in Los Angeles on 30 August 1996, in which he was substituted at half-time for Brian McBride. He made five appearances the following year and two more in 1998, all but one as a starter.[6][7]

In April 1997, after Canada lost to the United States in a World Cup qualifying match in which Wagner played, the Canadian Soccer Association complained to FIFA that Wagner should be ineligible to play for the United States based on his appearances for Germany's youth teams. On 2 May 1997, FIFA announced that Wagner was eligible to play for the United States because his games with the German teams were exhibitions, not official matches.[8] However, Wagner was rarely called into the U.S. team afterward and he was not named to the squad for the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

Managerial careerEdit

Borussia Dortmund IIEdit

Following his playing career Wagner became a coach, working mostly with his former Mainz teammate Jürgen Klopp. Wagner was appointed as Borussia Dortmund II manager with effect from 1 July 2011.[9] He left the role on 31 October 2015, amidst rumours that he was going to join Klopp's backroom staff at Liverpool.[10][11]

Huddersfield TownEdit

On 5 November 2015, he was appointed head coach of Huddersfield Town following the departure of Chris Powell.[12] Wagner brought Christoph Bühler, who had left Borussia Dortmund on 1 November 2015, with him as his assistant.[10][13]

In the summer of 2016, Wagner brought in 13 players from across the continent, including Danny Ward, Chris Löwe, and Aaron Mooy. Wagner took his players on a bonding tour of Sweden, where they had to survive with only basic equipment for a few days.[14] The team's success in the early 2016–17 season was largely accredited to the squad's tight bond, something that Wagner claimed was a direct result of this Sweden trip. A few weeks later, they visited Austria and kept two clean sheets in matches against Bundesliga sides Werder Bremen and FC Ingolstadt 04.[15] After an unbeaten start to the 2016–17 season, Huddersfield were top of the table at the start of September,[16] including a win at St James' Park against Newcastle United.[16][17]

On 29 May 2017, Huddersfield secured promotion to the Premier League for the 2017–18 season, following a victory on penalties in the play-off final against Reading.[18][19] On 30 June 2017, Wagner signed an improved two-year contract. [20] Wagner has been praised for his achievements in keeping Huddersfield in the Premier League at the end of the 2017–18 season, a feat regarded by bookmakers as improbable and described by The Guardian as "the Premier League's greatest survival story", with Wagner in particular noted as a leader of rare charisma and intelligence."[21]

On 14 January 2019, Wagner and Huddersfield Town agreed to terminate his contract by mutual consent, with the team in last place and eight points from safety.[22]

Schalke 04Edit

On 9 May 2019, Wagner was appointed the head coach of the Bundesliga club FC Schalke 04 for the 2019–20 season, with a three-year contract lasting until 30 June 2022.[23]

Managerial statisticsEdit

As of match played 20 September 2019
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record Ref
P W D L Win %
Borussia Dortmund II 1 July 2011 31 October 2015 164 57 47 60 034.8 [24]
Huddersfield Town 9 November 2015 14 January 2019 154 51 33 70 033.1 [25]
Schalke 04 9 May 2019 Present 6 4 1 1 066.7
Total 324 112 81 131 034.6



  1. ^ a b c d "Wagner: David Wagner: Manager". BDFutbol. Retrieved 3 May 2018.
  2. ^ "Wie Wagner den anderen eine lange Nase dreht" (in German). Hessenschau. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  3. ^ a b Doyle, Paul (9 September 2016). "Huddersfield's David Wagner: 'We had no electricity, no toilet, no beds and no mobile phones'". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Former U.S. soccer player coaches Huddersfield into English Premier League". USA Today. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  5. ^ "ASN: American David Wagner Now Coaching in England". Retrieved 14 January 2019. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |website= (help)
  6. ^ "Wagner, David". National Football Teams. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  7. ^ "1996 Lineups". US Soccer. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  8. ^ "Wagner Gets Approval for U.S. Team". The New York Times. 2 May 1997. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
  9. ^ "David Wagner coacht ab Juli die BVB-U23" [David Wagner coaches the BVB under-23 club in July]. kicker (in German). 2 March 2011. Retrieved 8 February 2013.
  10. ^ a b "Borussia Dortmund und David Wagner beenden Zusammenarbeit" [Borussia Dortmund and Wagner reach an agreement] (in German). Borussia Dortmund GmbH & Co. 31 October 2015. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  11. ^ "David Wagner leaves Dortmund U23 post amid Liverpool links". ESPN. 3 November 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  12. ^ "David Wagner: Huddersfield name ex-Borussia Dortmund man as boss". BBC. 5 November 2015. Retrieved 5 November 2015.
  13. ^ a b "Huddersfield appoint former Dortmund reserves manager David Wagner". The Guardian. Press Association. 5 November 2015. Retrieved 6 November 2015.
  14. ^ Threlfall-Sykes, David. "David Wagner & Mark Hudson review Huddersfield Town's pre-season camp in Sweden". Retrieved 23 February 2017.
  15. ^ Porter, Alexandra (28 July 2016). "FC Ingolstadt friendly rounds off Huddersfield Town pre season". Huddersfield Examiner. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  16. ^ a b "Newcastle United 1–2 Huddersfield Town". BBC Sport. 13 August 2016.
  17. ^ Dale, James (20 August 2016). "Sky Bet Championship round-up: Huddersfield town go top of the league as Newcastle win again". Sky Sports. Retrieved 22 February 2017.
  18. ^ "How Huddersfield won promotion to the Premier League". BBC Sport. 23 May 2017. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  19. ^ "David Wagner praises Huddersfield 'legends' after promotion to top flight". The Guardian. 29 May 2017. Retrieved 31 May 2017.
  20. ^ "David Wagner: Huddersfield Town boss extends contract with Premier League side". BBC Sport. 30 June 2017. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  21. ^ Doyle, Paul (10 May 2018). "Huddersfield staying up is Premier League's greatest survival story". The Guardian. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  22. ^ "David Wagner: Huddersfield Town manager leaves club by mutual consent". BBC Sport. 14 January 2019. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
  23. ^ "David Wagner becomes new head coach of Schalke 04". Schalke 04. Retrieved 9 May 2018.
  24. ^ "Borussia Dortmund II – Trainerhistorie". Kicker (in German). Olympia-Verlag. Archived from the original on 26 May 2019. Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  25. ^ "Managers: David Wagner". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 26 May 2019.
  26. ^ Threlfall-Sykes, David (5 November 2015). "Learn more about the new arrival". Huddersfield Town A.F.C. Retrieved 6 November 2015.
  27. ^ Woodcock, Ian (29 May 2017). "Huddersfield Town 0–0 Reading". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  28. ^ "Manager profile: David Wagner". Premier League. Retrieved 19 September 2018.

External linksEdit