Germany further proved their return to form ahead of UEFA Women’s EURO 2013 with two draws away against the United States, and coach Silvia Neid was certainly pleased.
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Germany further proved their return to form ahead of UEFA Women's EURO 2013 with two draws away against the United States.
Last year Germany exited the FIFA Women's World Cup they hosted in the quarter-finals, thereby missing out on the Olympics. But in 2012 they had won all ten of their fixtures before travelling to the US, and put on two impressive displays against the gold medallists in London.
In the first match on Saturday in Chicago, the home team's first outing since Pia Sundhage left to take over as Sweden coach, the US made a good start with Abby Wambach scoring after two minutes for a team under caretaker Jill Ellis. But 12 minutes later Anja Mittag lobbed Hope Solo to equalise and in front of 19,500 spectators, Verena Faisst, Mittag and Alexandra Popp came close to winning the game.
Coach Siliva Neid said: "Honestly I am a bit annoyed that we drew. A win would have been possible. Unfortunately we did not fully capitalise on our chances. But also I am pleased that we were very solid in defence and the back four were vigilant."
On Tuesday the teams travelled to East Hartford and drew 2-2. Wambach again opened the scoring late in the first half and Tobin Heath scored midway through the second but each time Dzsenifer Marozsan cancelled out the lead, on 48 and 85 minutes.
Contrary to the first game, Neid said that she was "totally pleased" after match two. "In the second half especially we were very dominant and showed some good build-up," she said. "We also managed to come back after conceding twice. We were totally eye to eye in those two matches. They did us good, because we gained important experiences."
Midfielder Viola Odebrecht said: "We never gave up and have shown once more that we are on level terms with the USA." Linda Bresonik added: "We have drawn against the reigning Olympic champions twice and in the second game we came from behind twice. We can be proud of that."
Germany's next game is against France in Halle on 29 November. They aim for a sixth straight European title in Sweden next July, and will discover their opposition in the 9 November draw.