Antwerp (dpa) - Although Germany's women's hockey champions take on their third gold medal in the European Championship finals in Antwerp, the far more motivating factor is the ticket for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
"If not Sunday, then when, we'll be so hot and have so much energy and fire, it'll be a great game," said Nike Lorenz. 48 minutes before the end of the match, the Mannheim player scored her penalty goal for a 3-2 win in the semi-final against Spain.
Opponent in the final is now the defending Netherlands, who had won his knockout duel with 8: 0 against England. "Holland is the top favorite and has a lot of final experience, but in the local press is spoken by us as a foe," said coach Xavier Reckinger. After all, the World Champion is anything but sovereign in the tournament. In the first two games against Belgium and Spain, it was enough only to a 1: 1. Thanks to a 14-0 victory over newly promoted Russia, the record champion secured after all still the second place in Group A behind Spain.
Captain Janne Müller-Wieland therefore sees a realistic chance to defeat the favorites: "We have had very, very short games against them lately and at some point you will win and if that's on Sunday, then that suits you. " For the 311-times national player, the Olympic ticket has top priority. "Then we would have a free fall and no mental stress," said the 32-year-old. The national coach also agreed: "That would be a relief for the whole system, the preparation, the Bundesliga and the players."
In 2013, the DHB ladies were recently European champion, Müller-Wieland and Franzisca Hauke were already in Boom / Belgium at that time. "It all depends on how we come down now and then we have a chance," says Reckinger. Should his team lose, it would have to prevail, just like the DHB men after their semi-final against Belgium, in two Olympic qualifying games in early November in Mönchengladbach.
German Hockey Federation
Game statistics Germany-Spain
Official tournament site