Germany’s women’s national team are preparing for the final two European qualifiers of the year. Germany will face Greece in Ingolstadt on 27th November (16:00 CET), before facing Ireland in Dublin on 1st December (18:00 CET). Head coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg answered questions during a press conference today, touching on the upcoming games, qualification for the EUROs, her players and the current pandemic situation.
…the upcoming EURO qualifiers: Although we’re already qualified for the 2022 EUROs in England, we’re still fully focused on the games against Ireland and Greece. We always want to showcase our quality, our focus on the game and our principles.
…upcoming opponents Greece: Despite winning 5-0 in the first meeting, it was a tough game for us. Greece are a tough opponent, very physical and the players have a strong mentality and can defend well. We will need to be patient, as well as playing smart and with energy so that we can create chances for ourselves. If we use our talent to challenge Greece, then we will force them to make mistakes and use them to our advantage.
…opponents Ireland: Ireland need to pick up points against us, which means that this game is crucial to them with an eye on the EUROs. They weren’t able to find their way into the game in the opening half last time, because of our quality. But, I know the coaches and the team. They will look to improve on that performance. They are playing at home, and will definitely pose more of a challenge. But, our goal is clear: we want to continue winning all our games.
…workload management: For us as coaches, it’s irrelevant that we’ve already qualified for the 2022 EUROs. It gives us security and a good feeling, but it cannot cause us to sacrifice the quality of our game. The players are currently playing a lot, and we want to help spread that burden. We want to deliver good performances, no matter who our opponents are. If at all possible, no player should play the full 90 minutes in both games. That wouldn’t be fair to the clubs either. It’s highly likely that some players will also not take part in some of our training sessions.
…Klara Bühl: Klara is very talented. She can play with both feet, is quick and is always looking to score. She’s a great finisher and has also developed a good eye on when to play that final pass. But, she still has a lot of unlocked potential in terms of her movement off the ball or when we’re out of possession. It’s a lot of fun to watch her play.
…FC Bayern’s Marina Hegering: Marina took a big step by joining Bayern München. She has a lot of talent and it a great addition to the team. She doesn’t hesitate to take on responsibility, has a great personality and is also proving to be a threat in front of goal. I hope that she stays consistent and healthy, and that her hard work is rewarded.
…the impact of the coronavirus: Despite the pandemic, we cannot see this year as a loss for women’s football. We stood up to the challenge and learned a lot as well. The players, but also the coaches, took on the challenge and have gained a new perspective on football. Personally, it made me realise how important this game is, especially to young people. It was a very educational year, which has helped us grow, both personally and in terms of our character. We are constantly being reminded of how to deal with the virus. We are doing everything we can to implement the hygiene protocol , especially within the league. However, you still have the feeling that there is so much passion within the clubs to organise games. I think it’s remarkable that no one is complaining, but are instead working on finding solutions.
…the upcoming months: Due to the pandemic, we don’t really know how many games we’ll be able to play, or who we’ll be able to face next year and in the lead up to the 2022 EUROs. We have a clear plan, but it’s not clear if we’ll be able to implement it. For me, it’s important that the players continue to develop. We need to find the right balance between young and inexperienced players, and the veterans. We always want to get better as a team.