Alexandra Popp was appointed as the new captain of the national team, since the beginning of the year, succeeding Dzsenifer Marozsán, who sustained a long-term injury. The 28-year-old has been with the team for a long time, has the second highest number of international appearances with 95 matches and is a role model within the team due to her versatility. The natural striker, who has scored 69 goals in DFB dress so far, has developed into an all-rounder in recent years, of the kind rarely seen in world football. She can play in defensive midfield; in the Champions League final in 2014 she was a left-back defender for Wolfsburg. “I am very mentally strong and can lead the team very well with my way of playing football on the pitch. In this respect, I am the ideal link between the team and the coaching team.”
Speed and technology
She is someone, says Popp, who can become animated and loud on the pitch, who says what she thinks, even if she has to apologize to other players or referees afterwards. At least there, women and men's football are very similar, Alexandra Popp believes. “Guys who squabble are rare on both sides.” If she wants to take women's football to the next level, her temperament could be an advantage. The Popp-star of German women’s football does not simply want to accept that it should be so difficult to market women more effectively in view of the great popularity of football in Germany. “Technically, we are now playing at a very high level. What has developed the most is the speed of women's football. You can see that.”
Their goal is clear: “That every football fan in Germany and elsewhere knows the names and faces of the top players. And that every player in the top leagues can live from football.” The DFB women now want to set the next impulse in this direction in France. But Alexandra Popp wants even more: “We have a duty not only to bring women's football to the World Cup, but also to make it sustainable.” So that younger female players will soon no longer have to earn the broad public interest because it has long since become a matter of course.
On Saturday, 8th of June at 3 pm, the DFB national team – the two-time World Champion – will enter the World Cup with its match against China. German channel ZDF broadcasts live.