Almuth Schult gets little to do with the emotional DFB comeback after more than three years. With an 8-0 win in Bulgaria, the European runners-up complete the World Cup qualification.
Introverted, Almuth Schult pulled the white tape off her fingers after her emotional international comeback. In the first DFB appearance after 1165 days, the national goalkeeper was hardly tested in the befitting 8:0 (3:0) of the European runners-up in Bulgaria in the last mandatory exercise after successful World Cup qualification, but then she was overcome by her feelings. “I’m emotionally upset because it was a very long time and a very long fight,” said the 31-year-old, tears rolling down her eyes: “An international match is worth a lot.”
The three-goal scorers Lea Schüller (35’/45’+1/52′) and Laura Freigang (44’/64’/87′) as well as Sydney Lohmann (54′) and Svenja Huth (81′, penalty kick) scored in a loose show in the 65th international match for Schult, who guarded the German goal for the first time since the 2019 World Cup. The mother of twins lost her regular position to Merle Frohms after shoulder surgery and childbirth.
“There’s not much to complain about today,” praised national coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg ARD-Microphone: “We’re going home satisfied, also because no player was injured.”
The DFB team had the ticket for the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand in their pocket since Saturday thanks to a 3-0 win in Turkey. The national coach was able to rotate to ten positions against the pointless bottom of qualifying group H with a clear conscience, including in goal.
“Almuth fought back, it’s a special moment to show that I can return as a mother,” Voss-Tecklenburg said before kick-off.
Germany – Bulgaria: Schüller and release with three pack
Only midfielder Linda Dallmann remained from Turkey’s starting XI. In an unusual 3-5-2 basic formation, the DFB selection experienced the gray everyday life again after the EM frenzy and attendance records in England: The expected one-way street football developed in front of almost empty ranks in the Lokomotiv Stadium.
In difficult space conditions, the German team often tried from a distance, Jule Brand (20th) hit the crossbar when trying to cross. Bayern top scorer Schüller then hit the lead from a short distance.
Shortly thereafter, Schult (43rd) showed her first save when Dimitra Iwanowa touched down from a distance. Even before the break, the storm duo Freigang and Schüller screwed the result up to the deserved height.
And Germany’s footballer of the year didn’t have enough against a hopelessly overwhelmed opponent: After the change of sides, Schüller improved her dream quota to 30 goals in 43 international matches.
On the way to the next title hunt (July 20 to August 20, 2023), the World Cup draw will now take place in Auckland on October 22. After that, the planning of the preparation begins, in which the top teams are to be tested. The new edition of the European Championship semi-final against France is scheduled for October 7th in Dresden.
A guest appearance with the world champions in the USA is planned for November. For the national players, however, the focus is initially on the start of the season with the clubs.