Shock for the German soccer players immediately before the European Championship final against England: Captain Alexandra Popp had to miss the final at short notice due to muscular problems. Instead, Lea Schüller, who was voted Germany’s footballer of the year, was in the starting XI.

    The 31-year-old Popp was the best scorer of the German team at the European Championships with six goals, and she scored twice in the 2-1 semi-final against France. The DFB announcement only came eight minutes before kick-off.

    Popp posed with her teammates on the field for the big team photo and then left the field. She was no longer listed as a substitute by the European Football Union UEFA. As a result, Popp was no longer able to participate in the race for the award as the tournament’s top scorer: England’s Beth Mead had also scored six goals before kick-off, but leads the ranking with five assists. Popp was replaced as captain by Svenja Huth.

    Otherwise, national coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg trusted all the players who were also in the starting XI against France.

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