Champions League: VfL Wolfsburg: Popp “very optimistic” against Paris

Status: 03/21/2023 7:44 p.m

First Paris, then Bayern: game-changing events are coming up for the VfL Wolfsburg women’s soccer team. On Wednesday evening, the quarter-final first leg of the Champions League will see the French runners-up. The top Bundesliga game in Munich is scheduled for Saturday.

Two away games in which the Wolfsburg women have to reckon with a lot of headwind. No problem for Alexandra Popp. She really likes it when the whole stadium is against her team. “We can really go into the game with a lot of self-confidence. And we can also really enjoy playing in the Prinzenpark,” said the VfL Wolfsburg striker before the German champions’ appearance in the often loud “witch’s cauldron” in Paris St. Germain . Part one of the Champions League quarter-finals on Wednesday (9 p.m., in the NDR Livecenter) can come.

Coach Stroot: “Expect an even game”

With twelve league goals under his belt, Popp is bursting with self-confidence. But the Vice European Champion and DFB captain also warns of the quality of the French around goalscorer Kadidiatou Diani. “We have to be compact and aggressive in the tackles. If we manage to keep their offense in check and we manage to get into the game well, then I’m very optimistic.”

“I don’t really care who is the favorite and I still want to go to the semi-finals.”
— VfL coach Tommy Stroot

Coach Tommy Stroot warned his team about the individual quality of the Parisians. “We know that a certain level is required of us. I expect a game at eye level,” said the 34-year-old. He is also counting on the second leg on March 30 (6.45 p.m.) in Wolfsburg: “I’m firmly assuming that no decision will be made in the first leg. We want to do a lot right here to prepare for the second leg.”

Oberdorf is missing in the hot phase of the season

In Paris, the two-time title holder (2013 and 2014) has to compensate for the bitter loss of Lena Oberdorf. The national player and mainstay in midfield is out due to a sprained right knee joint – just at the start of the hot phase of the season.

Bundesliga summit against Bayern live

Whether Oberdorf can be back on Saturday (5:55 p.m./live on Erste and in the Bundesliga summit between leaders Wolfsburg and pursuers FC Bayern Munich is open. The advantage of the “wolves” in the duel for the bowl has melted to two points. “At the end of the day I want to collect titles and raise trophies,” was Popp’s announcement – personal awards such as the top scorer cannon are “completely irrelevant to her”.

Especially since VfL this season with championship number eight could become the sole Bundesliga record champion ahead of 1. FFC Frankfurt (now Eintracht) – and Popp has been there at every title break so far.

Also in the Champions League against Munich?

It will not be the last showdown with Bayern this season. On April 15, Popp and Co. will be in the DFB Cup semifinals in Munich immediately after the international break.

And if the two German flagship clubs survive their quarter-final hurdles in the Champions League (FCB duels WFC Arsenal from London), they will also see each other again in the semi-finals in the fight for a place in the final in Eindhoven (June 3).

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NDR 2 Sports | 03/22/2023 | 11:03 p.m