Things are kicking into high gear for Germany’s women’s national team as they prepare to face Sweden on Sunday, in the lead up to the Women’s World Cup in France this summer.
DFB.de is giving you all the facts ahead of the game in Solna, where both sides will kick-off against one another for the 28th time.
Where things stand: Things ended scoreless after Sweden and Germany’s last meeting in the first round of the European Championships in 2017. This also marked the first tie between the two sides, where the record currently stands at 19 wins for Germany and seven for Sweden. Germany’s last loss against Sweden was a 2-4 defeat in the Algarve Cup in March 2015—since then they’ve gone on to win three in a row. Germany suffered their highest ever defeat to the Swedes in a 0-4 loss during their first meeting in the third-place match at the 1991 World Cup. At the Algarve Cup in 2012, Germany recorded their highest-ever win against Sweden in a 4-0 victory that featured a goal by Alexandra Popp and a Celia Sasic hat-trick.
Coaching success: Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s first game after taking over as head coach ended with a 1-0 victory over France on 28 February. With the win, Voss-Tecklenburg became one of several former head coaches—including Horst Hrubesch, Steffi Jones, Silvia Neid, Tina Theune, and Gero Bisanz—to pick up a win in their first match in charge.
Keeping the winning streak going: Germany won their last eight international matches in a row, before drawing 0-0 against Spain in their last match of 2018—Hrubesch’s last as head coach. Their last loss was a 0-3 finish against France in the She Believes Cup in March 2018. Germany is currently on their longest winning streak since 2015, where the team racked up ten wins in a row under then-head coach Silvia Neid.
The opponent: Sweden currently has 1,962 points and sits in ninth in the FIFA world rankings. Germany, meanwhile, currently sits in second place with 2,072 points. Sweden’s squad is a mix of experience and youth, including Caroline Seger (191 caps), Nilla Fischer (173 caps), and Hedvig Lindahl (155 caps). At 35, Sweden’s goalkeeper Lindahl is the oldest player on the team, while Julia Zigiotti is the youngest at 21.
Past performances: Sweden won just one of its four international matches in 2019, finishing with a record of one win, two ties, and a loss. The team failed to allow a goal against in 12 international appearances under head coach Peter Gerhardsson. However, Sweden has failed to score in three of their last six matches, where they went 2-2-2.
World Cup constant: This year marks Sweden’s eighth appearance at a World Cup. Along with Germany, they are one of just seven teams to have taken part in every World Cup since its inception. In qualifying for the upcoming World Cup, Sweden finished at the top of their group with 21 points.
The coach: Peter Gerhardsson has been Sweden’s head coach since September 2017 and took over from Pia Sundhage, who had coached the team from October 2012 until July 2017. Gerhardsson spent the entirety of his time as both a player and coach in Sweden. From 2002-04, he coached Sweden’s U-16 and U-17 teams before becoming the assistant coach for Helsingborgs IF from 2005-08. During his time as head coach of BK Häcken from 2009 to 2016, he coached them to a league title during in his final season.
Game location: The two sides will face each other in the Friends Arena (50,000 capacity) in Solna, located near Stockholm.