The Germany women’s U19 team have secured their ticket for Euro 2018 in Switzerland (14th until 31st July). Germany coach Maren Meinert’s team won 3-2 in the last qualification game against England, who were unbeaten up until the game.
“We started the game very well and scored a really nice goal pretty much straight away,” says Meinert. “Unfortunately we then lost our way a bit in the first half and we were quite lucky to go into the break at 1-1. But I think that we deserved the victory after an evenly-matched second half in which we showed a lot of fight. Of course, we’re delighted that we’ve qualified.”
Top goalscorer Anna-Lena Stolze gave Germany the lead in only the third minute of the match , before Hannah Cain equalised for England ten minutes later. Germany retook the lead after the break through Paulina Krumbiegel (59’), before team captain Lena Oberdorf extended the lead to 3-1 (84’). England’s late 3-2 goal only amended the score (87’).
Maren Meinert’s team were facing their direct opponents in the battle for a ticket to the Euros, the England U19s. Also with two wins from the first two group games, England were also on six points and were only second to the Germany youth team due to a lesser goal difference heading into the game. Hence, the decider came down to this game as only the group winner can progress and go to Switzerland.
Meinert brought in new faces and made eight changes to the side which won 3-0 win against Israel. Only Fatma Sakar, Lena-Sophie Oberdorf and Meret Wittje retained their places in the starting line-up. Anna-Lena Stolze, the tournament’s top goalscorer (with five goals before the match) made a return to the starting XI.
The Germany U19 women had a chance in the third minute of the match and converted it to take a very early lead through Anna-Lena Stolze. The Germany side were playing against a very strong England team, especially in attack and Hannah Cain proved that, equalising only ten minutes later (13’).
The result was enough, but it wasn’t good enough for the players, which is why Germany came out of the dressing room with momentum. Paulina Krumbiegel (59’) and Lena Oberdorf’s (84’) goals finally ended the fears of whether the Germany side could go through to the finals. England’s consolation goal (87’) came too late as even a draw wouldn’t have been enough for the “Three Lionesses” to qualify for a place at the Euros.