Germany Women continue their fine European Championship qualifying campaign with a flawless victory against Greece. Head coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg’s team won 5-0 against Greece in Thessaloniki and remains top of Qualifying Group 9 after four games without dropping points or conceding.
The home team set out to frustrate the visitors for the opening half hour, and the DFB-Team had to wait 33 minutes for the first goal, just three days after the convincing 8-0 win against Ukraine in Aachen. Alexandra Popp broke the deadlock in the 33rd minute, and Lena Oberdorf doubled Germany’s lead seven minutes later. After half-time, substitute Sandra Starke scored her first goal for Germany in her first international appearance just after the hour mark. Pauline Bremer scored again 15 minutes from time, and Klara Bühl added a fifth in injury time to wrap up the win.
This Germany side sought to take the initiative early, but lacked the attacking drive they possessed in their last couple of games. Against a Greece side that preferred to sit deep, Germany struggled to break them down initially, with more attacking moves getting stuck in the Greece defence rather than resulting in clear-cut chances.
At the other end, Voss-Tecklenburg's back three of Oberdorf, Johanna Elsig and Melanie Leupolz were hardly troubled at all. The Germany ladies had a little bit of luck with Popp's opening goal as Greece played the ball into the path of Turid Knaak. After winning the ball in the penalty area, she then pulled it back for her captain who found the corner of the net with a fine finish.
The team continued to battle against the robust Greece defence. The referee could easily have given a penalty for a strong challenge by Christina Kokoviadou following a high cross from Merle Frohms (35'). Oberdorf then scored and calmed the game down as she headed home a free-kick delivery for her second international goal (40').
SC Freiburg's Sandra Starke came on as a second half substitute to make her first appearance for the senior team. The first big chance of the second half fell to Lina Magull, who almost scored when her effort from close range struck the underside of the bar (48'). Popp's header from a corner 11 minutes later landed on top of the goal (59') and substitute Pauline Bremer headed just wide shortly afterwards (63').
As Germany grew in strength, the hosts started to fade and Voss-Tecklenburg's substitutes took advantage. After Leupolz and Bremer were both denied by some good defending, the ball fell to Starke, who slotted home to make it 3-0 (66'). Bremer then got her goal via an impressive lob (75'). Sofia Koggouli almost grabbed a consolation goal for Greece towards the end of the game (84') but instead it was Bühl who had the last word for Germany as she added her name to the scoresheet (90').