As one of the most surprising moves of 2018, Tayfun Korkut arriving at VfB Stuttgart – and being a success – made a lot of people sit up and take notice. The Swabians – one of the more traditional powers in the German game – should be fighting for Europe most seasons, but have endured a trying period of years.
As such, the work that Korkut done in 2017-18 was so surprising: they moved from relegation contenders to missing out on European football by a thread. However, despite a good summer, the tactical rigidity and general conservative play style of Korkut is beginning to rear its ugly head.
Already, Stuttgart look far more like his Leverkusen and Nurnberg sides than his class of 2017-18. His insistence for wide players who struggle to create chances, alongside the benching of exciting young talent like Anastasios Donis and Chadrac Akolo, is causing problems.
Add in the fact that his defensive choices are causing consternation, and it’s easy to see why there is so much hesitancy around Korkut. Despite signing a new deal until 2020, the German coach looks set to be out on his ear if the poor form continues.
With games against an in-form Werder Bremen and then a crunch tie against Hannover 96 coming up, it’s time for Korkut and Stuttgart to put some kind of form together. If they don’t, it could continue to be a long and trying season.