England Women vs Germany Women: Can the Lionesses match a sold-out Wembley?
Follow England Women vs Germany Women from Wembley across Sky Sports' digital platforms on Saturday; Kick-off 5.30pm
Last Updated: 09/11/19 3:23pm
England Women have sold out Wembley for their friendly against Germany Women. Now, they need to match it with a performance worthy of the occasion.
The Lionesses captured the imagination of the country with their performance at the 2019 Women's World Cup, reaching the semi-finals before losing to the United States and subsequently Sweden in the third-place play-off.
It follows on from a maiden SheBelieves Cup victory in March, with Phil Neville's side now selling out Wembley on Saturday, which will almost double the existing record attendance of 45,619 for a Lionesses match in England - which was also set against Germany in November 2014.
Speaking about the historic game, manager Neville said: "This is going to be a momentous occasion in the history of women's football in England.
"To have sold out Wembley Stadium for the first time and to have over 80,000 fans cheering on our team will not only be record-breaking; it will be an incredibly proud and humbling experience for myself, my players and staff.
"This will be a hugely significant landmark on our journey and we are all extremely honoured to be playing a part in that.
"But it will also be a moment for us to say thank you and show our enormous appreciation to all those players throughout the history of the women's game in England whose hard work, determination and resilience in far tougher times has helped bring us to where we are today."
England have suffered a dip in form following the World Cup. They have won just one game since then which came in their last outing against Portugal on October 8 - their first victory since beating Norway 1-0 in the quarter-finals on June 27 - losing two and drawing another.
England Women results since the World Cup
|29 August||Belgium 3-3 England (D)|
|3 September||Norway 2-1 England (L)|
|5 October||England 1-2 Brazil (L)|
|8 October||Portugal 0-1 England (W)|
There have been a few contributing factors. Neville has had a number of his World Cup performers in and out of the side, with Ellen White - who shared the Golden Boot with Megan Rapinoe and Alex Morgan after scoring six goals in France - having struggled with injury, although she is back in the squad for the game against Germany.
Fran Kirby and Toni Duggan will be missing this time around, though, with the likes of Jill Scott, Georgia Stanway and Millie Bright also pulling out due to various injuries. It has been difficult for Neville to find a consistent starting XI and he has been missing some of his best players.
But the Lionesses now have that little boost of confidence back under their belts after beating Portugal and are getting their stars back into action. Now, they need to rediscover the magic that sent them into the World Cup semi-finals and impress the 90,000-strong crowd at Wembley.
Not just a friendly?
The Lionesses will not play a competitive fixture for two years, having already qualified for the Women's European Championships in 2021 as hosts.
Some of the players will get the chance to play for Team GB at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, with Neville taking charge of the side that will incorporate players from across the home nations.
But as an individual team, England will need to treat each of their upcoming friendlies as a practice for when the competitive edge kicks in, and there is no better place to start than against old foes Germany on Saturday.
Germany Women - Europe's most successful side
Germany are one of the most successful international sides in the women's game and particularly in Europe. Since 1989, German sides have made it to the semi-finals of every European tournament, apart from the last one in 2017.
Indeed, they won six successive European Championships between 1995 and 2013, adding to the two titles won by West Germany and Germany in 1989 and 1991 respectively. They also beat England 6-2 in the 2009 Euros final in Finland.
In terms of the World Cup, Germany have two titles, won in 2003 and 2007, but it was England who were 1-0 winners in their semi-final meeting in 2015, giving the Lionesses their best finish at the tournament. At the 2019 World Cup, they lost to Sweden in the quarter-finals.
Germany also won gold at the 2016 Olympics, but have not qualified for Tokyo 2020 having failed to secure one of the three European places at the competition.
The coach - Martina Voss-Tecklenburg
A successful player for Germany, Martina Voss-Tecklenburg took over as women's head coach in late 2018, having previously managed Switzerland Women.
During her six-year tenure with the Swiss side, she guided them to their first World Cup in 2015 before qualifying for their maiden European Championships two years later.
Former midfielder Voss-Tecklenburg won 125 caps for her country, being part of four European Championship wins and was a runner-up at the 1995 World Cup. Domestically, she won the German league title six times and four German Cups.
She has also compared herself to Liverpool manager and compatriot Jurgen Klopp, as they are both known for their motivational tactics and communication skills.
She told German broadcaster ZDF earlier this year: "I see myself a lot in the way he does things. He works in a way which I think is good for players and people generally."
One to watch - Dzsenifer Marozsan
Dzsenifer Marozsan is not just one of Germany's best players, she is considered one of the best playmakers in women's football. She plays her club football for the best team in the game too and is a team-mate of Lucy Bronze, Nikita Parris and Alex Greenwood at Lyon.
She holds the record for the youngest player to appear in a Bundesliga game, doing so when she was 15, and has four Champions League winners medals - three with Lyon and one with her former club, Frankfurt - plus numerous domestic accolades in both France and Germany.
Marozsan has also won her fair share of personal awards. For the last three years, she has been named Female Footballer of the Year in Germany and the UNFP Female Player of the Year, beating inaugural Women's Ballon d'Or winner and Lyon team-mate Ada Hegerberg to the French title.
Internationally, Marzsaon has been involved in some big moments. She opened the scoring in the 2016 Olympic gold medal match against Sweden, which Germany won 2-1, and scored the only goal in a 1-0 win during the Euro 2013 semi-finals - also versus Sweden - which Germany went on to win. Marzsaon has 96 caps and 32 goals for Germany so far.
Follow England Women vs Germany Women with Sky Sports
Follow the England Women vs Germany Women live blog across Sky Sports' digital platforms from 4.30pm on Saturday, live from Wembley.