Vancouver Whitecaps defender Florian Jungwirth retires to take coaching role

Jungwirth will now help VWFC from the sidelines.
Jungwirth will now help VWFC from the sidelines. / Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

Florin Jungwirth announced his retirement from playing on Friday to immediately embark on a new career in coaching.

The German defender spent seven years in MLS, first playing over 130 games for the San Jose Earthquakes before joining the Vancouver Whitecaps in 2021. Jungwirth went on to make 31 appearances for the Whitecaps across all competitions.

Prior to arriving in MLS, Jungwirth represented a number of teams in his native Germany, including 1860 Munich, Dynamo Dresden, and Darmstadt 98, while picking up caps for his country across various youth levels.

The 34-year-old will now move into a coaching role with the Whitecaps as an assistant to head coach Vanni Sartini.

“I have so many great memories with the most beautiful game in the world,” Jungwirth said in a statement. “I’m grateful for all the players, coaches, and staff members who shared the road with me."

In his final season as a player, Jungwirth helped the Whitecaps win the Canadian Championship for the first time since 2015, securing a berth in the 2023 Concacaf Champions League.

He'll now look to use his experiences as a player to help the Whitecaps from the sidelines.

"I'm really grateful that the Vancouver Whitecaps, Axel Schuster, and Vanni Sartini have given me this outstanding chance to work as the assistant coach with the first team," Jungwirth added. "It’s a big form of trust and I can’t wait to pay it back."