Stefan Kuntz

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Stefan Kuntz
2018-04-23 ARD Stefan Kuntz-7041.jpg
Stefan Kuntz, 2018
date of birth October 30, 1962
place of birth NeunkirchenGermany
size 180 cm
position attack
years station
1970-1981 Borussia Neunkirchen
years station Games (goals) 1
1980-1983 Borussia Neunkirchen
1983-1986 VfL Bochum 100 (41)
1986-1989 Bayer 05 Uerdingen 94 (32)
1989-1995 1. FC Kaiserslautern 170 (75)
1995-1996 Beşiktaş Istanbul 30 0(9)
1996-1998 Arminia Bielefeld 65 (25)
1998-1999 VfL Bochum 20 0(6)
2000 Borussia Neunkirchen 1 0(0)
2002-2003 SV Furpach 22 (22)
2004-2005 FC Palatia Limbach 10 0(1)
National team
years selection Games (goals)
1983-1985 Germany U21 4 0(3)
1986 Germany B 1 0(2)
1993-1997 Germany 25 0(6)
Stations as a trainer
years station
1999-2000 Borussia Neunkirchen
2000-2002 Karlsruher SC
2003 SV Waldhof Mannheim
2003-2004 LR Ahlen
2016-2021 Germany U21
2021 Germany Olympia
2021– Turkey
1 Only league games are given.

Stefan Kuntz (born October 30, 1962 in Neunkirchen ) is a former German football player and - functional and current football coach . As a player, he made a total of 449 games (179 goals) in the Bundesliga from 1983 to 1999 for VfL Bochum , Bayer 05 Uerdingen , 1. FC Kaiserslautern and Arminia Bielefeld . He also played in Turkey for Beşiktaş Istanbul .

With 1. FC Kaiserslautern he won the DFB Cup in 1990 and German champion in 1991 . In the 1985/86 and 1993/94 seasons he was top scorer in the Bundesliga , 1987/88 and 1989/90 also in the DFB Cup. From 1993 to 1997 Kuntz was a national team player of the DFB and became European champion in 1996 . In 1991 he was voted Germany's first footballer of the year who had not yet played in the national team.

After several positions as a trainer, mainly in the lower class, of which Karlsruher SC was the most prominent between 2000 and 2002, Kuntz was manager of VfL Bochum from 2006 to 2008 and chairman of the board of 1. FC Kaiserslautern from 2008 to 2016. From August 2016 to September 2021 he was again a coach for the German U21 national team and led them to the title both at the European Championships in Poland in 2017 and at the European Championships in Slovenia in 2021.

Player career


Kuntz began his career in 1970 at Borussia Neunkirchen . On March 13, 1980, he played his first game for the professional team, which was then playing in the 2nd Bundesliga South. Coach Günther Noel replaced the then 17-year-old in the game against Eintracht Trier in the 76th minute. This game remained his only second division game for Borussia Neunkirchen, because the club was relegated to the Oberliga Südwest at the end of the season .

VfL Bochum

In the 1982/83 season , the Bundesliga club VfL Bochum noticed the striker, who was the top scorer in the Oberliga with 36 goals, and signed him for 55,000 marks for the 1983/84 season. VfL with coach Rolf Schafstall relied on young players during this time because of the club's financial situation. Kuntz, who continued his training as a police officer after moving to the Ruhr area, was part of the regular team at VfL from the start and made 32 games (eight goals) in his first season. His strike partner Christian Schreier was even more successful with 18 goals. Schreier was sold to Bayer Leverkusen at the end of the season . Klaus Fischer became the new player at Kuntz 'side . After eleven goals in 34 games in 1984/85, Kuntz became VfL Bochum's first Bundesliga top scorer in 1985/86 with 22 goals .

Bayer Uerdingen

In the 1986/87 season, the striker moved to Bayer 05 Uerdingen for 1.3 million marks . With the Bundesliga third-placed in the 1985/86 season, he took part in the UEFA Cup , from which they were eliminated in the third round against FC Barcelona . In the league, Karl-Heinz Feldkamp's team ranked eighth at the end of the 1986/87 season; Kuntz scored six goals. He criticized that Feldkamp, ​​who had left Uerdingen after the season, had not stood by him. The new coach in 1987/88 was Horst Köppel , who was replaced during the season by Rolf Schafstall , Kuntz's former coach at VfL Bochum. Things went better for the striker in 1987/88: 13 goals meant a significantly better goal balance than in the previous season. After also 13 hits in 1988/89 Kuntz went to 1. FC Kaiserslautern .

1. FC Kaiserslautern

Kuntz returned to the vicinity of his place of birth Neunkirchen . His father Günter was born in Kaiserslautern . At FCK, the goal for the 1989/90 season was to qualify for the UEFA Cup, which should be achieved with the new coach Gerd Roggensack . But soon the Lauterer found themselves in the relegation battle. In February 1990 Roggensack was dismissed and replaced by Karl-Heinz Feldkamp . Shortly afterwards there was a discussion between Kuntz and Feldkamp, ​​with which the player had fallen out during his time in Uerdingen. FCK finally saved themselves from relegation, which Kuntz, who was team captain in his first season , had a share of 15 goals. In the cup competition things went better for FCK from the start. On May 19, 1990 they stood in the DFB Cup final against Werder Bremen , which the Lauterer won with 3-2 goals. Kuntz, who had contributed to the cup victory with five goals in the entire competition, scored the 3-0 in the final in the 30th minute. In the second half, the Bremen team shortened to 3: 2.

Kuntz was not only used as a striker in his career. In the 1990/91 season he played in various positions outside his original position, namely as an attacking and defensive midfielder, on the left flank, as a man hit and as a libero. FCK surprisingly became German champions in 1991 with a team without big stars and with Kuntz as the leading player. As early as 1989, Kuntz formed a successful storm duo with Bruno Labbadia , who left FCK in 1991 (eleven and nine goals in the championship season). The 1991/92 season ended the Lauterer in fifth place in the table. Kuntz was successful again eleven times.

Coach Feldkamp's successor was Rainer Zobel in 1992 , under whose aegis Kuntz had to give up his role as captain. He scored six goals that season. Kuntz later described the 1992/93 season as his "worst season in Kaiserslautern". But things didn't go smoothly for the entire team: At the end of the season, FCK was only eighth and there were disagreements within the team. Zobel's contract was terminated. Under Friedel Rausch , Stefan Kuntz's goal quota (26/18 1993/94 and 28/15 1994/95) as well as the placement of the Lauterer team (2nd, 4th) improved again. In 1995 the striker left the FCK after a contract extension was not reached.

Besiktas Istanbul

Kuntz signed a contract with the Turkish first division club Beşiktaş Istanbul in the summer of 1995 . There he reached third place with his team in the Süper Lig and scored nine goals in 30 games.

Arminia Bielefeld and again VfL Bochum

Shortly before the start of the 1996/97 season, Kuntz returned to Germany and moved to Bundesliga club Arminia Bielefeld . In the first year Ernst Middendorp's team achieved relegation. Kuntz, who became European champion with the national team in the summer of 1996, scored 14 goals and was the team's top scorer. 1997/98, when Arminia threatened relegation, there were differences with coach Middendorp and manager Lamm. Middendorp criticized the commitment of his striker and Georg Koch , the goalkeeper of Arminia, even accused Kuntz of deliberately not hitting the goal in order to be able to switch to 1. FC Kaiserslautern in the event of relegation. Kuntz's departure was clear before the end of the season. However, the change to FCK did not materialize, in the end he went to VfL Bochum . After a season at VfL that ended with relegation, he ended his career.

His farewell game took place on July 21, 2000 in the Kaiserslautern Betzenberg Stadium, where Kuntz had "had his best time as a footballer".

National team

In September 1991, Kuntz was about to make his debut in the national team. He was scheduled for the international match against England at Wembley . However, a torn ligament that he suffered when he got out of the team bus four days before the international match before a league game against FC Bayern Munich prevented him from playing.

On December 18, 1993, Kuntz made his debut in the German national team . In the game against the USA (3-0) he was in the starting line-up and scored his first goal in the 79th minute. He was part of the national team at the 1994 World Cup in the United States . He was used there once (substitution in the 86th minute in the round of 16 against Belgium).

In 1996 he was at the European Championships in England with the German team European champion . He scored 1-1 in the semi-final against England in the 16th minute, which forced the English into a penalty shoot-out that they lost. He also played the final against the Czech Republic, which was decided by Oliver Bierhoff's first golden goal . After winning the European Football Championship in 1996, Kuntz was awarded the Silver Laurel Leaf together with the team of Federal President Roman Herzog .

Kuntz played his last international match on October 11, 1997 against Albania (4: 3). In a total of 25 international matches (20 wins, 5 draws, no defeat) he scored six goals. He holds the record of most German international matches without defeat.

Trainer and manager career

On November 15, 1999, Kuntz started his first coaching position at his home club Borussia Neunkirchen . He led the team to the championship in the Oberliga Südwest (81 points). Jürgen Friedrich , CEO of 1. FC Kaiserslautern, wanted Kuntz in the management of FCK, but this failed because of resistance from Otto Rehhagel and the chairman of the supervisory board, Robert Wieschemann . Previously, Kuntz had rejected an offer from MSV Duisburg with regard to a commitment to FCK . In May 2000 it was announced that Kuntz would be the coach of Karlsruher SC , relegated to the regional league, for the 2000/01 season . The desired return to professional business was achieved. In the long term, the KSC wanted to return to the Bundesliga. 2001/02 one reached at least the relegation. Especially in the season 2002/03 the KSC could hardly be active on the transfer market due to financial problems. After only two points from the first six games, Kuntz was dismissed on September 25, 2002.

Stefan Kuntz in June 2006

On April 3, 2003, eight games before the end of the season, Kuntz was introduced as the new coach of the second division club SV Waldhof Mannheim , which is in the relegation battle . At this point, the team was five points behind a non-relegation zone. Kuntz signed a contract until the end of the season with the option of another year if he was relegated. Finally, SV Waldhof lost six of the last eight games and was relegated bottom of the table. Waldhof even had to file for bankruptcy and compete in the top league in 2003. In the 2003/04 season, Kuntz was coach at LR Ahlen , also a second division team. The sporting success in the league did not materialize, however, and in the cup you were disqualified because Kuntz had substituted a fourth non-EU foreigner, which was forbidden at the time. In November 2003 the separation took place due to sporting failure.

During a subsequent break from professional football, he decided not to work as a coach for a club anymore. His long-time assistant coach was Frank Lelle .

Kuntz studied sports management and began working as a manager at the regional division TuS Koblenz in early March 2005 . He then worked in the same position from April 1, 2006 to April 1, 2008 at VfL Bochum .

On April 8, 2008, Kuntz took over the post of CEO at 1. FC Kaiserslautern . At this point the club was on the verge of relegation from the 2nd Bundesliga . In the last game, relegation was finally achieved. At FCK he met coach Milan Šašić , who was a coach there as a manager while Kuntz was working in Koblenz. On May 4, 2009, however, Šašić was released. In the 2009/10 season Kuntz returned to the Bundesliga with 1. FC Kaiserslautern . On January 18, 2016, it was announced that Kuntz will be leaving FCK at the end of the 2015/16 season due to disagreements with the supervisory board. On April 4, 2016, Thomas Gries replaced him prematurely. In November 2016, at the annual general meeting of 1. FC Kaiserslautern, he was denied discharge for his last year as chairman of the board .

Kuntz ran for the election of the league board on August 18, 2010 during the general assembly of the DFL. His rivals from the Bundesliga were Heribert Bruchhagen ( Eintracht Frankfurt ), Karl Hopfner ( FC Bayern Munich ) and Michael Meier ( 1. FC Cologne ). However, after Kuntz had already failed the internal test vote on election day, he - like Michael Meier - withdrew his candidacy. Heribert Bruchhagen and Karl Hopfner were elected.

In August 2016, Kuntz succeeded Horst Hrubesch as the new coach of the German U21 national team . He led them to the final three times in a row, winning the title at the U21 European Championship in Poland in June 2017 and at the U21 European Championship in Slovenia and Hungary in June 2021 . In addition, Kuntz was responsible for the German Olympic team at the soccer tournament of the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo .

On September 19, 2021, the Turkish Association announced that Kuntz would be the new coach of the Turkish national team .


In the music video for the song Three Lions 98 by the British band The Lightning Seeds , which symbolically represents a game between England and Germany, four of the German players wear jerseys marked "Kuntz", which in English resembles the vulgar English word " Cunts " , alluding to his equalizing goal for the 1-1 draw against England in the semi-finals of the 1996 European Championship and the associated elimination of the English team on penalties in their own country. It was the new edition of the song that was first recorded for the 1996 European Championships in England and re-recorded for the 1998 World Cup in France. The song quickly became a number one hit and an international soccer anthem.

After his time as a professional footballer, Kuntz played one more season in his Saarland homeland with the then A-League club SV Furpach . He then moved to FC Palatia Limbach, where his brother acted as the association league coach.

His goal celebration (the "(Kuntz) saw") gained a certain amount of notoriety.


Stefan Kuntz is the cousin of the singer and musical composer Andy Kuntz . His father Günter Kuntz played for Borussia Neunkirchen in the Bundesliga from 1964 to 1968 . His son Marc is a radio presenter and program director.

Before his career as a footballer, Kuntz was a police officer. He is a member of the board of trustees of the Youth Football Foundation, which was founded in 2000 by him, Jürgen Klinsmann , other national players and the lecturers of the football teacher special course.

Kuntz adopted on 23 May 1999 of the Saarland SPD as a member of the Federal Assembly nominated to the presidential election in part. In 2010 he received the Saumagen medal with the following reason: "In recognition of the special merits in the form of his long-term and consistent sporting achievements, his successful work for 1. FC Kaiserslautern and his social commitment in the board of trustees of the youth football foundation!" At the anniversary of the Bundesliga, Kuntz was voted into a “Saarland Anniversary Elf” in 2013. The choice, which was organized by Ellenfeld eV and the Saarpark Center , was open to all Saarlanders who had played in the Bundesliga since 1963.

Kuntz was an ARD expert at the 2018 World Cup and the 2021 European Football Championship .

Achievements and Awards

As a player

National team

National club competitions

  • 1 × German champion with 1. FC Kaiserslautern (1991)
  • 1 × DFB Cup winner with 1. FC Kaiserslautern (1990)

Personal awards

As a trainer

National team


  • DFB fair play medal: 2019



league Games (goals) society
Bundesliga 449 (179) 170 for 1. FC Kaiserslautern
120 for VfL Bochum
94 for Bayer 05 Uerdingen
65 for Arminia Bielefeld
2nd Bundesliga 001 00(0) 1 for Borussia Neunkirchen

In addition, there is an unknown number of games in leagues below the 2nd Bundesliga.

International matches

Web links

Commons : Stefan Kuntz  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ German Football Route NRW: Stefan Kuntz
  2. Kicker special issue 86/87, p. 24
  3. Kicker special issue 87/88, pp. 26/27
  4. Crazy and rock hard . In: Der Spiegel . Edition 20/1990.
  5. a b Wolfgang Kreilinger, Peter Lenk: Bastion Betzenberg . P. 114f. ISBN 978-3-928-23115-2 .
  6. "11 friends" interview: "I almost burst"
  7. ^ Matthias Arnhold: Stefan Kuntz - Matches and Goals in Bundesliga . Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 9, 2015.
  8. The stars give Kuntz the honor again
  9. ^ Matthias Arnhold: Stefan Kuntz - Goals in International Matches . Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. October 1, 2015. Retrieved October 9, 2015.
  10. a b Udo Muras: European champion Stefan Kuntz coach at Karlsruher SC . In: The world online . May 11, 2000.
  11. Stefan Kuntz is supposed to save Waldhof . Mirror online. April 3, 2003.
  12. Stefan Kuntz is hoping for LR Ahlen ., March 25, 2004.
  13. Stefan Kuntz has played out . Spiegel Online, November 14, 2003.
  14. a b (quoted from Stefan Kuntz hires in Koblenz ( Memento from May 18, 2015 in the Internet Archive )
  15. New board at FCK - press conference now on FCK-TV ( Memento from April 10, 2008 in the Internet Archive )
  16. Marketing director on the approach - Kuntz-Aus on Monday?, April 3, 2016.
  17. No discharge for former board member Stefan Kuntz . In: FAZ . November 12, 2016. Retrieved November 13, 2016.
  18. Tobias Schächter: U21 coach Stefan Kuntz in distress . In: Süddeutsche Zeitung . November 13, 2016, accessed November 13, 2016.
  19. League waddles Meier! ( Memento from July 22, 2012 in the web archive )
  20. Roland Zorn: DFL: Rauball stays and admonishes ., August 18, 2010.
  21. Kuntz and Kramer new to the DFB coaching staff, accessed on August 23, 2016
  22. German U21 coach Stefan Kuntz becomes national coach of Turkey. In: DER SPIEGEL . September 19, 2021, accessed September 19, 2021 .
  23. Tobias Rüther: Get up if you are a music lover . In: Spiegel Online . June 18, 2006.
  24. Image on, accessed on July 1, 2017.
  25. Tanja Di Pasquali: Good music non-stop . Archived from the original on March 27, 2018 ; accessed on March 27, 2018 (German).
  26. The bearers of the Saumagenordens
  27. Election of the Saarland jubilee team , accessed on July 6, 2018
  28. SWR Sport: Lahm, Hitzlsperger, Kuntz and Wolf in the ARD team . In: . ( [accessed on April 24, 2018]).