Five years ago, Dzsenifer Marozsán was in the Germany team that won the inaugural UEFA European Women's Under-17 Championship – and now she is preparing for UEFA Women's EURO 2013.
The daughter of Hungarian international János Marozsán, Marozsán was long considered a prodigy of German women's football even before that 2008 success, having become the Frauen Bundesliga's youngest player and goalscorer with her father's old club 1. FC Saarbrücken. She has since added many honours, top-scoring at both the 2008 U17 Championship and FIFA U-17 Women's World Cup, and helping Germany prevail at the 2010 FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup.
With this year's U17 finals kicking off in Nyon on Tuesday – for the first time without Germany – the 1. FFC Frankfurt midfielder, 21, has advice for the young players making their debuts at a major event, recalling her own matchday routine from 2008.
"Let's say we have a game at 3pm. I will get up around 7am or 8am. Breakfast is usually served until 9am, and it is up to us to decide when to have it. After breakfast, we all go out for what we call a 'walk with the ball' – we play five against two and just keep the ball up a bit.
"Then we usually have a meeting where we prepare the game and learn the lineup. Then I get back to my room to pack my stuff before having lunch. If the game starts later we get an additional match meal three or four hours before the game and maybe a snack two hours before, like a banana, toast or a pancake."
"I always listen to music before a game – no specific songs. I also get in touch with my family and friends, usually in the morning, so they can wish me all the best. There is not much talk before a match but there is music in the dressing room. Some players are very focused, others joke around. You can feel the growing tension when you get to the stadium and see the fans. When I go onto the pitch I just enjoy it."
"We won 3-0 [against France] and I can remember the Colovray Stadium perfectly – one main stand and a small hillside on the opposite side, where my parents were. I remember there were quite a few people and it was pretty warm. I remember very well the third goal from Ivana Rudelic; I gave the assist passing the ball from inside right. It was a hard-fought final, and one player got sent off after tackling me. When we scored the second goal, we were pretty sure we would win it if we stayed focused."
"It was my first major success so it is something I will always enjoy looking back on. There was a small party after the final in the hotel. No big celebrations, but we enjoyed spending time together. The moment you lift the trophy you don't think about anything – you just enjoy having achieved what you'd been dreaming of ever since you were a young girl. It is an indescribable feeling."
"It definitely helps. Every tournament I have played has helped me progress a bit. The activities around the game are pretty much the same, even if it happens on a different level – the rhythm and sequence of events are relatively the same."
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