The German football association (DFB) announced on Tuesday that it had decided to part company with Steffi Jones, who had taken over as coach of the women's national team following the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
A DFB statement said that the members of its presidential board had taken the decision following an analysis of the team's performance over the past several months.
Horst Hrubesch will take over as head coach of the women's team on an interim basis, starting with next month's World Cup qualifiers against the Czech Republic and Slovenia. Hrubesch is a member of the presidential board and former coach, who, among other things, led Germany's men to a silver medal at the Rio Games in 2016.
"The decision followed an intensive analysis of the previous months," Oliver Bierhoff, the DFB's director of national teams and football development, said. He added that the presidential board had come to the conclusion that based on the team's performance over the past several months and particularly at the SheBelieves Cup, the women's team needed a coaching change.
"Steffi Jones approached her job as coach with a great deal of commitment and dedication. For this, I thank her in the name of all of the members of the board... I would welcome her further involvement in the DFB and women's football in some other function," DFB President Reinhard Grindel said.
Under scrutiny since Women's Euro
The DFB's decision didn't come as a complete surprise, as Jones' performance had been under scrutiny at the German FA and in the media since the women's national team was knocked out of last summer's Women's Euro by Denmark in the quarterfinals. The pressure on her had increased after Germany were upset by Iceland in a World Cup qualifying match last October. She is thought to have bought herself a reprieve with a strong 4-0 win over France in November, but a winless SheBelieves Cup in the United States changed her fate.Chuck Penfold