DFB.de: Ms. Meinert, two days have passed since you arrived here in Switzerland. How have you settled in?
Maren Meinert: Very well. We had a relaxing arrival and found the hotel easily. The area is beautiful and the weather is also playing its part. For our preparations, a good training pitch is essential and we also have that here. We’re happy with the conditions we're working under.
DFB.de: The players have had a long season so how have you motivated them in your preparations for the tournament?
Meinert: Regeneration is important for our players, so we gave them a break after the season before they returned to individual training. In the sessions at the moment, we’re working on team tactics and are consolidating what we already worked on over the course of the season.
DFB.de: What kind of things will you be focusing on until Wednesday's first group game against Denmark?
Meinert: We need to be up for the fight and have fresh legs. Our training sessions are therefore intense but not too long. We’ll adapt to our opponent, but above all we want to continue to work on our own attacking and defensive game to reach the level we’ll need to be successful.
DFB.de: What impression have you got from your team after the first few training sessions?
Meinert: I’m optimistic. We still have to work on certain things and correct what isn’t currently completely satisfactory. After the first few sessions we can say the team are working well, want to and are making progress every day – that’s very positive.
DFB.de: In the lead-up to the tournament, you emphasised that the group is a very competitive one. What will it come down to in the end?
Meinert: Nothing will be gifted to us, that’s for sure. We have to go into every challenge thinking we’ll win it. It shouldn’t matter what tactics we choose or how we line up, we can’t forget to assert ourselves and that’s what we’re working on at the moment. We want to be fully committed to the game from the first minute, consider everything that happens as important and not wait for anything. I hope we’ll set the tone of the game right from kick-off.
DFB.de: You secured your participation in the Euros with a tight 3-2 win over England and in other qualifying rounds there were some close matches. Do you expect the same from the tournament?
Meinert: Absolutely. For me, there isn’t a clear favourite. You have to also consider the fact that the U20 World Cup in France starts shortly after the European Championship. That means that many countries with good teams at this age group will divide their players between the two squads, and that’s also how we’ve operated. It also means we have a very young side and I think it makes the tournament very equal. All eight teams will have the belief they can make it to the semis and play for the trophy. Therefore, fine details will make the difference.