De Graafschap Manager Is In A Relegation Play-Off Against Cambuur, His Next Employers
In a rare and crazy scenario in Netherlands, De Graafschap's manager Henk de Jong finds himself in a lose-lose situation.
After his De Graafschap side finished in 17th place in the Eredivisie, his team are in the middle of a relegation semi-final play-off against Cambuur from the second tier of Dutch football.
But incredibly, he has already signed a deal to take over from Cambuur as boss next season and therefore his team's next opponents are his next employers.
Whoever wins will be playing in the top flight next season and it's one of the most mad, awkward situations in recent memory.
The first leg has already been played and finished 1-1 but De Jong is an unusual dilemma where losing the second leg on Wednesday is better for him because then he will be managing in the Eredivisie - whereas a defeat means he will be in charge of Cambuur in the Eerste Divisie.
De Graafschap manager Henk de Jong will join 1st Division team Cambuur in the summer.
De Graafschap play Cambuur in the promotion/relegation battle on the last game of the season.
If he wins, he'll be in the 1st Division next season, if he loses he'll be in the Eredivisie.
- bet365 (@bet365) May 20, 2019
This still feels strange - Promotion/relegation game, de Graafschap manager Henk de Jong has already agreed to join the opposition next season. So if he wins he'll be managing Cambuur in the Eerste Divisie, if he loses he may be managing Cambuur in the Eredivisie. #camgra
- Jonny Coles (@FRvoetbalJonc) May 19, 2019
However, the man himself will be professional and go about his business as usual before he moves onto his new club.
"I am a sportsman and do not want to get relegated," the 54-year old told Dutch news outlet AD.
"There is also nobody in Leeuwarden who expects me to help them now. I am a trainer at De Graafschap. I haven't had any contact with any of the Cambuur players yet."
The closest thing we have come to this situation in recent times was last season when Niko Kovac guided Eintracht Frankfurt to their first trophy in 30 year at the expense of Bayern Munich, who had already signed him up as their new manager.
Bayern Munich 1-3 Eintracht Frankfurt FT:
Niko Kovac has guided Eintracht Frankfurt to their first major trophy in 30 years :trophy:
They did it by beating Bayern Munich, the team he'll manage next season... :raised_hands: pic.twitter.com/ptSVydSn1c
- Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 19, 2018