Germany vs. Russia: Key Players to Watch in Women's World Cup Qualifying
European champions Germany face Russia on Saturday afternoon with both teams looking to get their World Cup qualifying campaigns off to a good start at the Stadion der Freundschaft in Cottbus.
The hosts face tough opposition in a Russia side who were defeated just once in three games at the European Championship as they continue their steady progression.
Who, then, are the players to watch out for?
Dzsenifer Marozsan, Attacking Midfielder, Germany
Germany have had some great attacking midfielders in recent years and, at just 21, Dzsenifer Marozsan appears as though she could eventually also reach those levels.
The Hungarian-born midfielder won the Golden Ball award for best player at the 2012 U20 World Cup, per Soccer America, and has already made a good start to her senior career, scoring the goal that took Germany into the European Championship final.
Just 5'7" tall, the diminutive playmaker has great balance and footwork with which she looks to unlock defences. Marozsan could be a real star in women's football in the coming years.
Celia Okoyino da Mbabi, Striker, Germany
German Footballer of the Year in 2012, Celia Okoyino da Mbabi already has 43 international goals at the age of 27 and is well on her way to writing her name into the country's footballing history.
Okoyino da Mbabi scored a remarkable 17 goals in just 10 matches to help Germany qualify for the European Championship this summer and, while she scored just twice at the tournament, she remains the side's main attacking threat.
A transfer to FFC Frankfurt this summer saw the forward move from her long-time club Bad Neuenahr and the hope will be that she can quickly pick up the form of the past couple of years.
Nelli Korovkina, Forward, Russia
Ismailovo forward Nelli Korovkina scored four times in six appearances during the European Championship campaign, including qualifying, to establish herself as one of the young stars of Russian football.
Now 24 years old, Korovkina's standout performance of the Euros came against England where she scored a header and also threatened to add a second with a wonderful curled shot that flew narrowly wide of the goal.
Technically gifted and quick across the ground, she can cause the German defence problems if given the opportunity.
Elena Terekhova, Centre Midfield, Russia
Ryazan midfielder Elena Terekhova is a key member of the Russian side, occupying a box-to-box role in midfield. Her experience and composure will be important assets if her side are to get anything from this encounter.
With nearly 50 caps to her name, Russia will look to the 26-year-old in a match that is likely to see them come under intense pressure from the hosts.
Terekhova showed at the Euros that she is also a capable goalscorer by finding the back of the net in a 1-1 draw with Spain. But it will be her tidy passing and energy in midfield that will be key on this occasion.
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