The German Football Federation's (DFB) leadership needs to be replaced by an expert panel of football professionals who value sport above marketing and merchandising, according to former Germany international Matthias Sammer.

It has been a difficult few weeks for the DFB, following Germany's shock World Cup exit in the group stage and Mesut Ozil's targeting of its hierarchy in the letter he wrote to announce his retirement from international football.

The disappointing World Cup campaign had many calling for changes to be made at the top of German football, while the Ozil situation led to president Reinhard Grindel coming under pressure to hand in his resignation.

Grindel has managed to cling on to his job, but Sammer - a Germany great - thinks the DFB needs to be completely shaken up and led by football people if it is to effectively react to the Russia 2018 debacle.

"We need a few people who have shaped the identity of football and know how to succeed," Sammer told Kicker .

"We have to be more than critical of the league. We have to focus again on the quality and mentality of wanting to be victorious. What is currently being offered is not enough.

"Professionals should start to steer things in the right direction. In any discussion right now, I cannot really sense the sensitivity that's needed, and if the requirement is the top of the world - and it has to be - we need to be very critical in discussing and finding a structure [that fits].

"What sporting competence is there in the governing bodies at DFB and DFL [German Football League]?

"Sport has to be above everything, more important than marketing and merchandising.

"I will not return to an operational business, but this all affects me, so if someone wants to hear from me, they can."