The Germany U19s Women’s team were defeated 2-1 in the final of the European Championships in Scotland on Sunday afternoon. Nicole Anyomis fired home the game’s opening goal to put Germany ahead in just the sixth minute, but strikes from Sandy Baltimore (12’) and Maelle Lakrar (73’) gave France the win.
Coach Maren Meinert made one change in her last game coaching the team, bringing in Christin Meyer for the injured Paulina Käte Krumbiegel. Germany almost got off to a nightmare start after Baltimore stole the ball at the back, but the French midfielder missed from six yards out.
Germany soon bounced back from an unnerving start. Melissa Kössler fired a wonderful strike at the crossbar from the outside of the box, and Anyomi reacted quickest to poke the ball home and give Germany the lead (6’). Their advantage was short-lived, however, as ‘Les Bleuettes’ struck back just six minutes later – Baltimore beating custodian Wiebke Willebrandt with a shot into the top corner at the near post.
Play oscillated between both sides of the pitch, with the two teams choosing to favour attack over defense. In the 18th minute, Gina-Maria Chmielinski found space in the France penalty area but her shot was well-parried by goalkeeper Justine Lerond. Minutes later, Lisann Kauts was the next player to see her shot saved by Lerond’s gloves. Germany had a great opportunity to go ahead in the 40th minute after Anyomis was played in by Kössler, but her shot came off the post and travelled parallel to the goal line, without crossing it.
The game remained a balanced one going into the second 45 minutes, with Germany having the first big chance of the half. After a free-kick, Chmielinski’s overhead kick was blocked at the last moment for a corner (54’). Meyer was played through in the 61st minute, but took too long to shoot, just like Anyomi in similar scenes a minute later. In the 66th minute, Marie Müller almost caught out keeper Lerond with a thumping free-kick from 30 yards out.
Despite Germany’s chances, it was France who took a shock lead. The ball fell to Maëlle Lakrar after a France corner, and the defender made no mistake in rifling home from five yards out. France then almost scored again, but Melvine Malard headed just over the bar (75’). The Germany team went all out, with substitute Shekiera Martinez and Kössler both going close but having no success against a vigilant Lerond in the French net. Germany had a final chance in the 94th minute when Chmielinksi struck the ball towards goal, but Lerond safely snuffed out the threat to ensure that France won 2-1.###more###