The 47-year-old, who played no higher than the Regionalliga in his playing days, was a youth coach at Bremen for 12 years, managing at all levels before a two-year stint in charge of the under-19s.
He had a strong record with the oldest youth team, leading them to second in the A-Junioren Bundesliga Nord/Nordost in 2018-19, and they were top of the table when the past season was aborted due to coronavirus, however the club let him go.
He will have big shoes to fill at the (appropriately-named) Bremer Brücker, after predecessor Thioune led the Lower Saxony club from the lower reaches of the 3. Liga to 2. Bundesliga survival in less than three years before leaving to take over at Hamburg.
Osnabrück sporting director Benjamin Schmedes said in the club’s statement that they had “a very clear profile” in mind for the role and that Grote had “convinced us with his high level of expertise” and that “his ideas of football and the further development of players fit our requirements.”
Grote meanwhile says that he is “looking forward to the new challenge at VfL with a team that is capable of development.” He believes his mission will be similar to at Bremen – “developing players and playing successful football” – and he hopes to continue the club’s “rapid development” with “hard and honest work.”
Grote has signed a two-year contract and will be formally unveiled on Monday at a press conference with Schmedes – suggesting the supporting director will not be leaving himself, despite strong rumours linking him with Nurnberg.
Header image source: VfL Osnabrück.