The battle between Germany and the USA is about to enter a 34th round in the SheBelieves Cup on Thursday night (01:00 CET). We report on the key facts ahead of the meeting between the two female national teams in the Talen Energy Stadium in Chester.
RECORD: Germany and USA have met 33 times before, 22 of those games were won by the Americans. Germany won just four of those games, with the remaining seven ending in a draw. Germany are on a run of 13 games without a win against their American counterparts (five draws, eight defeats). That’s the longest run of games without a victory against a specific country in the team’s history. The 3-0 win in the World Cup semi-final in 2003 was the Germans only victory in their last 22 meetings with the USA (7 draws, 14 defeats). Germany have conceded in each of their last nine games against the USA. Their last clean sheet in this fixture came in the 0-0 draw in China in January 2007. Germany have conceded 11 goals in their last five games against the USA.
The last meeting between the sides was in match three of last year‘s SheBelieves Cup. On 9th March 2016 the Germans lost 2-1 having led through Anja Mittag’s strike in the 29th minute. However, goals from Alex Morgan (35’) and Samantha Mewis (41’) secured the win for the USA. The last competitive match between the sides was in the 2015 World Cup semi-final in Montreal. Carli Lloyd scored a penalty in the 69th minute and Kelley O´Hara ensured defeat for the Germans in the 84th minute.
HISTORY: The USA have been regular opponents of Germany in recent friendly tournaments. However, the Germans have won just one of their last 14 such meetings (three draws, 10 defeats). The solitary victory came in March 1993 courtesy of Agia Napa in a 1-0 win. Since then, Germany have scored just five goals in 11 friendly meetings with the USA and have undergone eight friendly defeats to the Americans in that time.
Germany suffered their heaviest international defeat on 14th March 1996, losing 6-0 to the USA in Decatur, Georgia. The teams met for the first time in July 1988 in Arco, Italy. The USA won 2-1.
THE OPPONENT: The American women’s football team played their first game on 18th August 1985. They lost the match 1-0 to Italy in Jesolo. The Americans hold the record for the most World Cup triumphs with three (1991, 1999 and 2015). They also have a record four Olympic titles (1996, 2004, 2008 and 2012). In addition, they have seven CONCACAF Gold Cup titles and 10 Algarve Cup triumphs – both records.
The US team recorded their highest win in January 2012 with a 14-0 win over the Dominican Republic in an Olympic qualifying match. They’re heaviest defeat came in the 2007 World Championships semi-final against Brazil 4-0. That ended a record run of 51 games unbeaten.
Their record appearance maker is Kristine Lilly, who, between 1987 and 2010, played 354 times for the national team which is more than any other man or woman for the USA. She also scored 130 goals. The USA’s record goalscorer is Abby Wambach with 184 goals. That’s also a record for international men and women’s football.
The USA girls are ranked number 1 in FIFA’s world ranking list with 2,140 points and have been first since their 2015 World Cup triumph. Germany sit second, 21 points behind the USA.
OPPONENT’S COACH: Jill Ellis is English-born head coach of the USA women’s national team. She moved to the US at a young age and began coaching whilst at university. She started working for the United States Soccer Federation in 2000. She was the head coach of the U20 and U21 national teams as well as assistant and interim coach of the national ‘A’ team. She took over from Tom Sermanni as head coach of the national team in June 2014. After winning the Gold Cup in 2014 and the Algarve Cup in 2015, her greatest achievement to date is the 2015 World Cup triumph. As coach of the U21 US women’s team she won the Nordic Cup in 2000 1-0 against Germany.
LINKS: German head coach Steffi Jones is the daughter of an American soldier and is also an American citizen. From 2002 to 2003, she played in the USA for Washington Freedom where she won the 2003 National Women’s Soccer League. Jones won the first of her nine international caps for Germany against the USA in October 1997 in a 3-1 win.
Many German national team players are familiar with their American opponents from their club sides. Pauline Bremer, Kristin Demann, Isabel Kerschowski, Babett Peter, Felicitas Rauch, Sara Doorsoun and Anja Mittag all play in Potsdam with Alyssa Naeher. Dzsenifer Marozsan knows Ali Krieger well as the pair won the German Cup together with FFC Frankfurt in 2011. Mandy Islacker and Ashlyn Harris play together at Duisburg. Josephine Henning and Anja Mittag played with Lindsey Horan at Paris Saint-Germain.In addition, Pauline Bremer, Josephine Henning and Dzsenifer Marozsan are teammates of Alex Morgan at Olympique Lyon.
FORM: The German national women’s team is undefeated in eight games. Seven victories have followed the 1-1 draw with Norway in November 2016. The last defeat came in August 2016: a 2-1 loss to Canada in the group stages of the Olympics in Brazil. Germany have won 13 of their last 14 matches played on foreign soil. The 2-1 defeat to the USA in the SheBelieves Cup in March 2016 is the only defeat in their last 22 away from home (17 wins, four draws). Germany have scored in each of their last 17 games.
The USA have won their last six matches with an overrall goal ratio of 34-3. Jill Ellis’ team is unbeaten in 25 gamjes (22 wins, three draws). The last defeat in normal time for the USA came in December 2015 1-0 against China in New Orleans. That remains the only defeat in their last 50 international matches (42 wins, seven draws). Since the defeat to China, the USA have won 20 of their 21 home matches. Only Japan managed to get a draw in the USA in this time.
CONSISTENCY: Anja Mittag has played in 52 consecutive international matches. The 9-0 defeat of Russia in September 2013 is the only one of 73 international matches which Mittag has missed.
ANNIVERSARIES AND RECORDS: There could be additional reasons for Germany to celebrate against the USA. Midfielder Leonie Maier is one match away from her 50th for Germany. Two goals would take the German national team to 350 away goals. Anja Mittag is sixth on the all-time list of German female goalscorers with 49 goals. She’s only two goals away from Bettina Wiegmann in fifth place. Alexandra Popp and Renate Lingor are tenth on the list with 35 goals, two goals behind Martina Müller in ninth. Renate Lingor is fifth on the list of all-time record appearance makers for Germany with 149 caps.
Steffi Jones has recorded four wins and one draw to begin her tenure as national head coach. Only Tina Theune-Meyer went longer unbeaten at the start of her stint in charge with nine undefeated. Silvia Neid was also undefeated in her first five games at the helm, winning all five!