Germany coach Silva Neid has been forced to pick untested players for her UEFA Women's EURO 2013 squad after the injury crisis that has robbed her of six likely selections in recent weeks.
A mixture of injuries and illness has forced the withdrawal of defenders Babett Peter and Verena Faisst, midfielders Viola Odebrecht and Kim Kulig, forward Alexandra Popp and the experienced and versatile Linda Bresonik. Neid, hoping to lead Germany to a sixth title in a row – having been either player, assistant or head coach in the previous five triumphs – has chosen six squad members with fewer than ten appearances, including uncapped midfielder Sara Däbritz and goalkeeper Laura Benkarth.
"We've worked hard between ourselves over the last few weeks, analysing, swapping ideas and gaining a new perspective," said Neid, whose side beat Canada 1-0 last night and take on world champions Japan at Fußball Arena München on 29 June. "At decision time, it was really difficult but nuances tipped the balance."
Neid still has plenty of know-how in her squad, naming nine of the players that took the crown in Finland in 2009, among them Célia Okoyino da Mbabi, who scored a record 17 goals in qualifying this time around. Bianca Schmidt is another veteran of 2009 – and she, Benkarth and four of their squad-mates were also in the team that won the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup on home soil. In Sweden, Germany's women will face the Netherlands, Iceland and Norway in Group B.
Goalkeepers: Nadine Angerer (1. FFC Frankfurt), Laura Benkarth (SC Freiburg), Almuth Schult (SC 07 Bad Neuenahr).
Defenders: Saskia Bartusiak (1. FFC Frankfurt), Jennifer Cramer (1. FFC Turbine Potsdam), Josephine Henning (VfL Wolfsburg), Annike Krahn (Paris Saint-Germain FC), Leonie Maier (SC 07 Bad Neuenahr), Bianca Schmidt (1. FFC Frankfurt), Luisa Wensing (VfL Wolfsburg).
Midfielders: Fatmire Bajramaj (1. FFC Frankfurt), Melanie Behringer (1. FFC Frankfurt), Sara Däbritz (SC Freiburg), Lena Goessling (VfL Wolfsburg), Svenja Huth (1. FFC Frankfurt), Nadine Kessler (VfL Wolfsburg), Simone Laudehr (1. FFC Frankfurt), Melanie Leupolz (SC Freiburg), Isabell Linden (Bayer 04 Leverkusen).
Forwards: Lena Lotzen (FC Bayern München), Dzsenifer Marozsán (1. FFC Frankfurt), Anja Mittag (FC Malmö), Célia Okoyino da Mbabi (SC 07 Bad Neuenahr).
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