The women’s national team take on Slovakia in Zilina today in a FIFA Women’s World Cup qualifier (14:00, live on ARD), a game in which Anja Mittag will make her 100th appearance for her country. The LdB FC Malmö forward will be the 18th German women’s player to reach the milestone. In an exclusive interview with the journalist Annette Seitz of DFB.de, the 28-year-old recalled her winning goal against Norway in the UEFA Women’s EURO 2013 final, the importance of her 100th game for her country, her most vital goals and Birgit Prinz’s amazing record.
DFB.de: Everyone is waiting to see you make your 100th international appearance against Slovakia. How important is that landmark for you?
Anja Mittag: It’s a great honour. It’s a figure you don’t see every day, though I’ll have to wait and see if the national team coach is going to select me. If she does, it will be amazing. I’m thrilled about it already.
DFB.de: Can you remember your international debut? It came against Italy on 31 March 2004 in Bolzano. You came on in place of …
Mittag: … Sandra Smisek?
DFB.de: That’s right, Sandra Smisek.
Mittag: I’ve got pretty vague memories of it, though. I remember that we won 1-0, thanks to an Anja Mittag goal. Time flies by so fast, and I can’t remember my 50th or 75th international match for example. When I sit back and think about winning 100 caps it just feels strange because it doesn’t feel as if I’ve been in the national team for so long.
DFB.de: So what do you remember?
Mittag: Obviously I remember the European Championship because it was such a special moment. I’ve had a lot of fun playing in a fantastic team.
DFB.de: Is there any match in particular that you remember as being a turning point in your career?
Mittag: It’s hard to say. Every game means something and has its own story behind it. To my mind, though, the European Championship final against Norway in Sweden counts for more than any other.
DFB.de: Is that because you scored the winner?
Mittag: Yes. Winning a title for your team by scoring the decisive goal is the best thing that can happen to you as a player. Things like that tend to stay with you.
DFB.de: What other objectives do you have now?
Mittag: I’d love to beat Birgit Prinz’s record (laughs).
DFB.de: She played 214 matches for the national team.
Mittag: Yes, yes, I was joking. But seriously, I hope to be able to carry on playing for a long time at the highest level. We’ll have to wait and see what the future holds for me, but I’d love to be around for the 2015 World Cup. That’s my objective anyway.