The truth about the Windhorst dispute – now Gegenbauer unpacks – Bundesliga

After 14 years as Hertha’s presidency, Werner Gegenbauer (71), who was originally elected until 2024, resigned on Tuesday.

Bild: Why are you resigning prematurely?

Counter pawn: “I have served as President of Hertha BSC on a voluntary basis for 14 years. My work is over. I want to transfer responsibility now and make a fresh start. At the request of several members, I have taken up the position again as President in 2020 in order to ensure stability after our investor joins the Position. Now I want to start a new era at Hertha BSC. I would also like to set new priorities in my own life, for which I need more time.”

Bild: Have you succumbed to criticism from Herta investor Lars Windhorst, who publicly called for your downfall in March?

Counter pawn: “I made my personal plans a long time ago. I would like to make it clear that there is no conflict between Gegenbauer and Windhorst. There is a conflict between Tennor Group as our investor and Hertha BSC. This issue must be calmed and resolved.”

Bild: What is this conflict?

Counter pawn: “Two basic things: influence and money. I made it clear from the start that I am the chairperson of the Hertha BSC members. I owe it only to you. That is why I have made sure that we retain full decision authority at all times, even if we have an investor. I subscribe to the 50 plus 1 rule. This means that in the end all decisions are made by Hertha BSC and its committees and departments. This applies to strategic, structural and of course personnel decisions. So it is no coincidence that Windhorst’s actions openly attacked the President and covertly attacked CFO Ingo Schiller. Both stood in the way of his goal of influencing on individuals and strategic decisions.

Bild: And the struggle over money?

Counter pawn: We have tried to take Tenor with us in all decisions. Far beyond our contractual obligations. At the same time, of course, we expect Tennor to honor its obligations – and pay for its shares in Hertha BSC KGaA in accordance with the contract and on time. Unfortunately, this did not happen often, which caused a huge disruption to the planning of the entire club and especially in the licensed players department. It was my duty to demand compliance with the tenor treaties. To protect Hertha BSC. “

Bild: Windhorst accused you of burning his money and not telling him how the money was used.

Counter pawn: “This claim, like many others, is false. Hertha BSC KGaA recently commissioned an independent auditor to audit the use of funds from the investment and shareholder agreement with Tennor Holding. The result is that the necessary approvals have been granted for all transactions requiring approval and there are no indications of violations of duty in relation to the use of funds. The specials made available by Tennor. In short: everything went right. Those are the facts.”

Bild: After the clashes, a group of fans raised a poster demanding: “Out of Windhorst and Gegenbauer.”

Counter pawn: “The reading that shocked me. Criticism and disputes are part of a living association. But the rules of the game must be fair. Respect for others must be preserved.”

Bild: There has been only a limited reaction from the Executive Committee to the public attacks on you by Lars Windhurst. Not so much for the president’s defense, is it?

Counter pawn: “I was very pleased with the statement from the Executive Committee. You trusted our solidarity, you don’t have to say too many words. Why did the corpses and other people remain silent speaks for itself.”

Bild: What is the status of Hertha BSC as a result of the conflict with Tennor?

Counter pawn: “The recent statements of Lars Windhorst have led to a division in the Hertha family that had not existed before. It should be the aim of all concerned that they meet again.”

Bild: Is your resignation a first step towards that? After all, Windhorst no longer wants to work with you and accuses you of maintaining power and bargaining.

Counter pawn: “Now you can see what my supposed grip on power looks like. If the constructive cooperation and trust between me and the Executive Committee, and all committees, departments and staff at Hertha BSC are described as ‘cheating’, Mr Windhorst still does not understand the nature of our club. We Hearthaners stick together. some. We certainly argue too, perhaps often, but we are united on this. Best for Hertha BSC. This principle has guided me in all things.”

Bild: What should the new president look like?

Counter pawn: “It is up to the members to decide. I would like to see a Hertha resident who will resolve existing disputes, who will unite all stakeholders and who, on the solid foundations established by the current Executive Committee, will lead Hertha BSC to a successful future in their own Olympic stadium. TERMS So good, believe me.”

Bild: On May 29, Hertha is threatened with a turbulent general meeting. Among other things, there is a vote against the entire presidency.

Counter pawn: “Hertha BSC has over 40,000 members, the majority of whom are moderate people who love their club, find a home in it and want to celebrate success with it. We hope this majority will pay close attention to who is in charge of Hertha BSC. I very much hope that the future president will come from Central our association.”

Bild: What’s the best decision you’ve made?

Counter pawn: To raise €374 million from Tenor Group. without Hertha BSC having to relinquish important decision-making powers.”

Bild: Don’t you regret the upheaval that caused it?

Counter pawn: “No. I’d like you to do it again. First, because Hertha BSC badly needed this money for a change as a club and company. Without this money we would be worse off. And second, because I believe in the benefits of investing. The first three years were tough. Tenor expected a lot From Hertha BSC, its members and staff. But at the club we have always kept our commitments, even if it was said publicly otherwise. I am optimistic that the cooperation will become more calm and harmonious in the future.”

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