In a re-match of the 2009 UEFA Women's Euro Final, the England women's national team were able to avenge their 2-6 defeat from 13 years ago and capture the first major international footballing trophy for their country's program.
The DFB-XI, hampered by the loss of captain Alexandra Popp just prior to kick-off, were able to force extra time after falling behind 0-1.
A goal from England sub Chloe Kelley nevertheless sent the eight-times European Champions to their first-ever European Final defeat.
|DFB Bundestrainerin Martina Voss-Tecklenburg||Steffen Prößdorf CC-BY-SA 4.0|
The England women's national team have captured the European crown after defeating Germany 2-1 before a crowd of over 87,000 at Wembley Stadium on Sunday. The German women, who saw their twenty-year-reign as European Champions come to an end in 2013, will be heartbroken to see an excellent tournament run come to an end. England head-coach Sarina Wiegman became the first woman trainer to successfully defend this particular title. She won the tournament with the Dutch in 2017.
Wiegman, as everyone expected, made no changes to her starting XI. In so doing, she became the only trainer to utilize the exact same personnel in any international football tournament (men's or women's ever). The gut-wrenching news for Germany, and indeed everyone who had been following the competition enthusiastically, came during the warm-ups. A muscle strain forced DFB talisman and tournament golden boot contender Alexandra Popp out of the German lineup. Bundestrainerin Martina Voss-Tecklenburg turned to the recovered Lea Schüller as Popp's replacement.
The hostesses had the better of the early chances in a tightly contested physical duel. Wiegman's Lionesses had recorded two shots on target by the time Sara Däbritz first sent a German effort goanward in the 10th. England defender Lucy Bronze alertly cleared Däbritz's strike off the line. Both teams largely neutralized one another over the next quarter-of-an-hour with optically sound attack builds and well-timed defensive tackles.
The next major chance came in the 26th when Germany's Marina Hegering saw her close-range effort off a corner cleared off the line by a mob of English defenders. Lioness striker Ellen White sent a well-struck effort just over the crossbar in the 38th. There would be no other noteworthy chances in the opening half, though match official Kateryna Monzul did see fit to dole out three yellow cards. White, Georgia Stanway and Germany's Felicitas Rauch all went into the book during a half of very intense challenges.
Voss-Tcklenburg opted to bring on VfL Wolfsburg's Tabea Waßmuth in place of Klara Bühl's replacement Jule Brand just prior to the restart. The German Mädels did start off the second half much brighter. Waßmuth unfortunately couldn't find the finish during a breakthrough one vs. one chance against keeper Mary Earps in the 48th. Less than two minutes later, Lina Magull sent an effort from a promising position wide. The Germans kept the pressure on until England substitute Ella Toone scored against the run-of-play in the 62nd.
Keira Walsh astutely spotted German center-halves Hegering and Kathrin Hendrich operating too far apart. The Man City Ladies midfielder sprung Toone with an inch-perfect upfield through ball. With Hegering and Hendrich unable to catch up, Toone had only German keeper Merle Frohms to beat. The 22-year-old kept her nerve and lofted over Frohms cooly for the 1-0.
It really appeared not to be Germany's day when the Mädels missed out on a big double chance to equalize some four minutes later. Magull's effort after a nice move into the half-right space thundered off the post. The rebound fell directly to Schüller, who unwittingly hit her effort directly into the arms of the out-of-position Earps.
Further German pressure only resulted in crosses and diagonals. for which there simply were no takers in Popp's absence. Just when it appeared as if the overcommitted Germans were about to get caught on the counter, the very active Magull managed to equalize in the 79th. Magull did extremely well to redirect a Waßmuth pass into the roof of the net from about five meters out with a deft touch.
Battling some clear fatigue, both sides weren't able to come up with much in the remaining minutes of normal time. Neither side could truly establish any sort of rhythm in a first period of extra time that featured many stoppages. A personnel decision made by Voss Tecklenburg at the end of the first period arguably led to Germany's demise.
Central defender Hegering--who did enter the tournament with injury issues--made way for Sara Doorsoun in the 104th. Hegering's strong defensive presence on corners might have proved useful when England sub Chloe Kelly banged home the game-winning goal in the 111th. A clearly demoralized DFB-XI could find no way back from the emotional tally.
|3||R. Daly ↪88|
|7||B. Mead ↪64|
|9||E. White ↪56|
|10||G. Stanway ↪88|
|11||L. Hemp ↪120|
|14||F. Kirby ↪56|
|17||N. Parris ↩120|
|18||C. Kelly ↩64 ⚽|
|20||E. Toone ↩56 ⚽|
|5||A. Greenwood ↩88|
|16||J. Scott ↩88|
|23||A. Russo ↩56|
|7||L. Schüller ↪67|
|22||J. Brand ↪46|
|5||M. Hegering ↪103|
|17||F. Rauch ↪113|
|13||S. Däbritz ↪73|
|20||L. Magull ⚽ ↪90|
|14||N. Anyomi ↩67|
|16||L. Dallmann ↩90|
|23||S. Doorsoun-Khajeh ↩103|
|4||L. Lattwein ↩113|
|8||S. Lohmann ↩73|
|18||T. Waßmuth ↩46|