Women's Euro 2022

Lena Oberdorf admits she 'doesn't recognise that she's 20' after Denmark rout

Sean Walsh
Oberdorf was outstanding on Friday
Oberdorf was outstanding on Friday / Maja Hitij/GettyImages
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From Brentford Community Stadium - Germany midfielder Lena Oberdorf has admitted she agrees with analysis that she plays like she's older than 20 in the aftermath of their 4-0 win over Denmark.

The Wolfsburg star put in a stellar performance as Die Nationalelf romped to victory in west London, with goals from Lina Magull, Lea Schuller, Lena Lattwein and Alexandra Popp putting the Danes to the sword on the opening day of Euro 2022 Group B fixtures.

Oberdorf went into the tournament as a rising talent to keep an eye on, and she revealed that while she is aware of the maturity she plays with, it's not too an important consideration.

"I don’t recognise that I’m 20. I feel like when I’m on the pitch everyone sees me as like 28 years old as a player. I know the team and they say all the time that ‘outside the pitch we really see that you’re 20’, I’m like yeah, but I am! Let me be 20!" Oberdorf said.

"But on the pitch I just forget about my age, just play, just have fun, get into the duels, because that’s what I do the best."

Oberdorf's gamesmanship came to the fore in the first half when she cynically fouled Sofie Junge, but did clarify that she thought this was an error on her part rather than a clever bit of experienced play.

"No, I felt like I messed up!" Oberdorf admitted. "That’s how I felt because I looked back and saw all the defensive line standing perfectly and I was like ‘damn, maybe you shouldn’t [have fouled]!’ But I felt like it was a counter attack, so I wanted to interrupt it, but also I thought I would have the ball clear but it was fast."

Germany went into the tournament with several doubters after an inconsistent year having won just two of seven matches prior to Euro 2022.

But Oberdorf said the squad isn't letting outside pressure get to them.

"We didn’t really feel the pressure from external factors. It was more that we put ourselves under pressure because we know what kind of quality we have and we know what kind of players we have," she said.

"Then it’s just showing us and in the past we had those games where we didn’t have it on the pitch and everybody was like ‘ah, Germany are not going to do anything this tournament’. Then we won 7-0 against Switzerland [in June], everybody was like ‘they’re gonna win’! So now it’s just going from game to game and we’ll see how we’re going to improve from game to game."

Germany return to Brentford on Tuesday to take on Spain, and end the group stage against Finland in Milton Keynes next Saturday.

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