Pierre Littbarski

Pierre Littbarski

Littbarski in 2006
Personal information
Full name Pierre Michael Littbarski
Date of birth (1960-04-16) 16 April 1960
Place of birth West Berlin
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)
Playing position Attacking midfielder, Winger
Club information
Current team
VfL Wolfsburg (Chiefscout)
Youth career
1967–1976 VfL Schöneberg
1976–1978 FC Hertha 03 Zehlendorf
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1978–1986 1. FC Köln 234 (89)
1986–1987 RC Paris 34 (4)
1987–1993 1. FC Köln 172 (27)
1993–1994 JEF United Ichihara 63 (10)
1996–1997 Brummell Sendai 29 (5)
Total 532 (135)
National team
1979–1982 West Germany U-21 21 (18)
1980 West Germany B 1 (0)
1981–1990 West Germany 73 (18)
Teams managed
1999–2000 Yokohama FC
2001 Bayer Leverkusen (assistant)
2001–2002 MSV Duisburg
2003–2004 Yokohama FC
2005–2006 Sydney FC
2006–2008 Avispa Fukuoka
2008 Saipa
2008–2010 FC Vaduz
2010–2011 VfL Wolfsburg (assistant)
2011 VfL Wolfsburg (caretaker)
2011–2012 VfL Wolfsburg (assistant)

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.

Pierre Michael Littbarski (German pronunciation: [ˈpi̯ɛʁ lɪtˈbaʁskiː]; born 16 April 1960) is a German football manager and former footballer. He was mainly an attacking midfielder or winger and is best known for his brilliant dribbling abilities. Littbarski was a FIFA World Cup winner with West Germany in 1990. He was also runner–up twice in 1982 and 1986 with West Germany. Littbarski was caretaker manager of VfL Wolfsburg after taking over from Steve McClaren from 7 February to 17 March 2011.

Playing career

Littbarski spent most of his playing career at 1. FC Köln, winning the DFB-Pokal once, in 1983, and was three times runner up in the Bundesliga (1982, 1989 and 1990). He has also played for RC Paris in Ligue 1 as well as for JEF United Ichihara and Brummel Sendai in Japan. In his career, he was initially used as a deep-lying striker before being utilised as an attacking midfielder. "Litti", as he was nicknamed by German fans, was widely known for his excellent dribbling abilities and humorous attitude, being one of the fan favourites in German Bundesliga during this decade. In 1985 his goal versus Werder Bremen was elected "Goal of the Year".

International career

Littbarski had a prolific but short career as part of the West German Under-21 side. He was a part of the squad that got to the 1982 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship final. The team lost to England 5–4 after a two-leg final (losing 1–3 away and winning 3–2 at home). Littbarski scored a hattrick against the English in Germany, but ultimately they lost the tie.

Littbarski earned his first cap for West Germany on 14 October 1981 in the 1982 World Cup qualification against Austria. West Germany manager Jupp Derwall started him in a three-man front line alongside Klaus Fischer and Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. Littbarski's international career got off to a promising start, as he scored both the opening and the second goals in that game. His third international goal came at the 1982 World Cup, in the second round match against Spain, a 2–1 victory. Against France in the semi-final, Littbarski scored the opening goal and, later, on a penalty kick in the deciding post-overtime shoot-out. The now legendary match ended in a 3–3 draw. Littbarski was also involved in the dramatic equalizer, crossing to Horst Hrubesch, who headed to Fischer, who in turn scored with an overhead bicycle kick. A poignant scene in the penalty shooutout showed the young Littbarski consoling a tearful Uli Stielike, who missed a penalty, burying his head in Littbarski's shirt, as West Germany's goalkeeper, Schumacher saved Didier Six's penalty to even ths score, with the Germans eventually winning 5–4 on penalties. West Germany lost 3–1 to Italy in the final. Littbarski played the whole match, receiving a yellow card in the 88th minute.

At the UEFA Euro 1984, West Germany, with Littbarski, were eliminated in the group stage after a string of poor performances. The 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico, while successful for West Germany, proved less so for Littbarski personally. He was benched by manager Franz Beckenbauer, and had to watch the semi–finals and the finals from the bench. Eventually, West Germany finished again as runners–up, this time losing 3–2 to Argentina. In 1987, he played in a notable match against England and scored two goals, one directly from a corner, as the Germans won 3–1.

The German players had high hopes for the UEFA Euro 1988 on their home soil. However, the hosts lost 2–1 to the Netherlands in the semi–finals. Littbarski did not score any goals in the tournament. In 1990, Littbarski enjoyed a successful final appearance at the FIFA World Cup, as West Germany won their third title, defeating Argentina 1–0 in the final in Rome. Littbarski scored his only goal in the group stage against Colombia but started three of the four games at the knockout stage, including the final.

Managerial career

In 1999 he started his coaching career with Yokohama FC of Japan Football League and he led the club to the promotion to J2 League. He has also been the manager of Yokohama FC (twice), as well as assistant manager of Bayer 04 Leverkusen and manager of MSV Duisburg.

Sydney FC

He was manager of Australian A-League side Sydney FC between 2005 and 2006, and led them to the FIFA Club World Championship in 2005, and a win in the inaugural A-League Championship.

He was famous amongst Sydney FC supporters and the media for his stylish brown suits. Sydney under Littbarski were criticised for boring football, but the results could seldom be argued with and Sydney FC went on to claim the inaugural A-League Championship under his reign. Littbarski and Sydney FC severed ties on Wednesday, 5 May 2006, with Littbarski announcing he would not re-sign for the club following disputes over a cut-price contract offer.

Avispa Fukuoka

In December 2006, Littbarski was appointed the manager of Avispa Fukuoka, a J2 League side that was newly demoted to the second division after the 2006 season. In July 2008, he left the club and was replaced by Yoshiyuki Shinoda.[1]

Saipa FC

On 26 July 2008, it was announced that he became the new manager of Iranian side Saipa F.C.[2] His contract was terminated on 8 October 2008 after nine games.

FC Vaduz

On 4 November 2008 he signed a contract as head coach and team manager of FC Vaduz.[3] On 12 April 2010 he was dismissed due to lack of success.[4][5]

VfL Wolfsburg

On 9 June 2010 Littbarski signed a two years contract as assistant coach by VfL Wolfsburg.[6] After Steve McClaren was sacked on 7 February 2011, Littbarski was appointed caretaker manager of VfL Wolfsburg. Felix Magath was subsequently made head coach in March 2011.

Career statistics

Club performance League Cup League Cup Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Germany League DFB-Pokal DFB Ligapokal Total
France League Coupe de France Coupe de la Ligue Total
1986–87RCF ParisDivision 1324
Germany League DFB-Pokal DFB Ligapokal Total
Japan League Emperor's Cup J.League Cup Total
1993JEF United IchiharaJ1 League35932604411
1996Brummell SendaiFootball League27531-306
Country Germany 406116
France 344
Japan 92156313011118
Total 532135


Germany national team

International goals

Score and results list West Germany's goal tally first.
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 14 October 1981 Praterstadion, Vienna  Austria 1–1 3–1 1982 World Cup qualifier
2. 3–1
3. 18 November 1981 Westfalenstadion, Dortmund  Albania 6–0 8–0 1982 World Cup qualifier
4. 14 April 1982 Müngersdorferstadion, Cologne  Czechoslovakia 1–0 2–1 Friendly
5. 12 May 1982 Ullevaal Stadion, Oslo  Norway 2–1 4–2 Friendly
6. 3–1
7. 2 July 1982 Santiago Bernabéu Stadium, Madrid  Spain 1–0 2–1 1982 World Cup
8. 8 July 1982 Estadio Ramón Sánchez Pizjuán, Seville  France 1–0 3–3 1982 World Cup
9. 24 February 1985 Estádio Nacional, Lisbon  Portugal 1–0 2–1 1986 World Cup qualifier
10. 27 March 1985 Ludwigsparkstadion, Saarbrücken  Malta 4–0 6–0 1986 World Cup qualifier
11. 17 April 1985 Rosenaustadion, Augsburg  Bulgaria 3–1 4–1 Friendly
12. 30 April 1985 Strahov Stadium, Prague  Bulgaria 2–0 5–1 1986 World Cup qualifier
13. 9 September 1987 Esprit Arena, Düsseldorf  England 1–0 3–1 Friendly
14. 2–0
15. 13 October 1987 Parkstadion, Gelsenkirchen  Sweden 1–0 2–2 Friendly
16. 22 March 1989 Vasil Levski National Stadium, Sofia  Bulgaria 2–1 2–1 Friendly
17. 4 October 1989 Westfalenstadion, Dortmund  Finland 2–0 6–1 1990 World Cup qualifier
18. 19 June 1990 San Siro, Milan  Colombia 1–0 1–1 1990 World Cup

Managerial statistics


Team From To Record
Yokohama FC 2003 2004 88 20 34 34 22.73
Avispa Fukuoka 2007 2008 72 30 12 30 41.67
Total 160 50 46 64 31.25



1. FC Köln[9]




See also


  1. "Avispa fires manager Littbarski". The Japan Times Online. 12 July 2008. Retrieved 9 October 2008.
  2. "Littbarski's the man for Saipa". The AFC.com. 26 July 2008. Retrieved 22 September 2014.
  3. "Pierre Littbarski als Teamchef zum FC Vaduz". FC Vaduz (in German). 4 November 2008. Retrieved 9 February 2011.
  4. "Eric Orie als Cheftrainer zum FC Vaduz". FC Vaduz (in German). 12 April 2010. Retrieved 9 February 2011.
  5. "Pierre Littbarski in Vaduz entlassen" (in German). bazonline.ch. 12 April 2010. Retrieved 12 April 2010.
  6. "Pierre Littbarski wird Co-Trainer beim VfL Wolfsburg / Hoeneß: "Er passt wunderbar zum VfL"" (in German). VfL Wolfsburg. 10 June 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2010.
  7. "Pierre Littbarski – Goals in International Matches". RSSSF. 1 February 2006. Retrieved 23 November 2011.
  8. "J. League Data Site". data.j-league.or.jp (in Japanese). Retrieved 15 September 2016.
  9. "Pierre Littbarski" (in German). fussballdaten.de. Retrieved 21 January 2015.
  10. "P. Littbarski". Soccerway. Retrieved 21 January 2015.
  11. "World Cup 1982 – Statistics". Planetworldcup. Retrieved 19 October 2015.
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