Julian Nagelsmann – Coaching Principles & Philosophy

Julian Nagelsmann, the recently appointed head coach of German National Football Team, has emerged as a globally recognized coach for the next generation of football players. His innovative coaching methods and tactical approach have garnered widespread acclaim in the football community. In this article, we will delve into Nagelsmann’s training philosophy, his approach to developing young players, and his dynamic influences on the field. We will also explore his coaching guidelines and the importance of coaching identity. Join us as we unravel the genius behind Nagelsmann’s success in the world of football.

Training Methods & Principles

Julian Nagelsmann believes in the dynamics of team training environments and how they can shape players to adapt dynamically to match-day adjustments. His coaching adjustments are based on ethical perspectives, ensuring that players develop in a well-rounded manner. Principles play a crucial role in Nagelsmann’s coaching philosophy, as they serve as guiding quotes for players regardless of the match outcome, opponent, or situation. These principles establish a strong foundation for players to make decisions on the field, influencing team dynamics. Understanding the building blocks and patterns of action is essential to Nagelsmann’s approach, as they provide players with a framework for decision-making.

“The Principles & how to be able to implement them” “Have the right Athletic Training” “Action patterns that players are able to make decisions on the field – that influence the Team Dynamics”

Dynamic Influence on the Field

Julian Nagelsmann emphasizes the importance of understanding the strengths of opponents and categorizing them accordingly. By assessing whether the opponent is better, equivalent, or weaker than his team, Nagelsmann can tailor his match preparation and strategies accordingly. Tactically analyzing the opponent’s strengths and weaknesses and adjusting his team’s gameplay accordingly is crucial. For example, if his team anticipates having less ball possession, Nagelsmann focuses on developing effective pressing strategies. Understanding the dynamics of weaker opponents versus stronger opponents helps Nagelsmann shape his team’s defensive and attacking strategies accordingly.

“Weaker opponents means more possession phases & more counter-pressing actions – it is our identity” “Greater Defensive Players & vs. Weaker Opponents greater Attacking Players”

Adapting Players Within the Game

Nagelsmann seeks players who not only understand the tactical ideas within the game but also have the mentality to identify critical moments during matches. Emulating the team’s plan and working within it is crucial, but players must also have the cognitive and emotional resilience to adapt to different situations. Away fixtures play a significant role in shaping the players’ mentality, as they need to focus on the tactical plan, irrespective of external factors such as referees or fans. Emotional resilience allows the team to regain its identity and perform optimally.

Coaching Approach

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Operative Approach

Nagelsmann understands that his coaching approach can be influenced by various factors, such as the opposition and the emotional state of the game. When facing formidable opponents like Manchester City or Barcelona, Nagelsmann encourages his team to embody their own beliefs and play accordingly. Additionally, the influence of fans and spectators cannot be underestimated, as their offensive and attractive perspectives shape the dynamics of the game. Nagelsmann acknowledges the hierarchy of thinking, realizing the importance of working with players who can change the dynamics of the game.


Continuous evaluation and reassessment are vital in a dynamically changing game context. Nagelsmann believes in supporting players’ decisions on the field and providing them with tactical guidance. His role as a football trainer is to protect the players, take the pressure off them, and support the game itself. By making tactical decisions, reflecting on them, and supporting the players’ decisions, Nagelsmann ensures that his team is well-prepared for each game.

Coaching Identity

Nagelsmann takes ownership of his coaching beliefs and principles, even when discussing them with the media. Courage and self-confidence are essential attributes for a football trainer, and Nagelsmann upholds these values. While players may not always adhere to the same ideas, they are encouraged to make their own decisions, taking responsibility for their actions on the field. Nagelsmann’s role is to protect and support the players, providing them with the necessary information to make informed decisions.

Valuable Insights

Throughout his career, Nagelsmann has faced various challenges and questions from fellow coaches and team members. Let’s explore some of the intriguing insights he shared during his time as RB Leipzig’s head coach:

Influence on Emotional State of the Game

Nagelsmann acknowledges that his role as a co-trainer operating on the emotional state of the game has positively impacted his decision-making process. By understanding and managing the emotions of the players and the team, Nagelsmann can make clearer decisions regarding the dynamics of the game.

Individual Player Qualities

While considering the ever-changing game context, Nagelsmann emphasizes the importance of recognizing the unique qualities of individual players. His coaching principles provide a reference point for players, regardless of the specific formation or tactics used. Nagelsmann focuses on training patterns of action and instilling a deep understanding of the principles that underpin his coaching philosophy.

Language Barriers and Information Processing

Julian Nagelsmann faces the challenge of working with players who may not understand a particular language or have difficulty processing information. To overcome this hurdle, video components play a significant role in training. Commentaries and animations are used to highlight important details, ensuring that players can grasp the information presented to them. Furthermore, Nagelsmann adapts his coaching approach to players who speak different languages, ensuring that they can understand the instructions in a language they are comfortable with.

Adaptability of Coaching Principles

Julian Nagelsmann acknowledges the importance of adapting coaching principles to suit individual players’ understanding and abilities. While there is room for players to have a say in the game’s context, Nagelsmann emphasizes the importance of establishing a common knowledge and language within the team. This collaborative approach ensures that players can effectively apply the principles in their decision-making process.


Julian Nagelsmann’s coaching philosophy and innovative approaches have solidified his position as one of the most influential coaches in modern football. His emphasis on dynamic training environments, player adaptability, and tactical understanding sets him apart from his peers. By embracing his coaching identity and instilling the principles of the game, Nagelsmann has created a unique and successful approach to coaching. As the football world continues to evolve, Nagelsmann’s vision and methods will undoubtedly shape the future of the sport.

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