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Germany

German Women Score Big

Whereas the men's national team failed to get past the group rounds in the summer's European Championship in Portugal, Germany's women are assured of much bigger successes next year. Despite missing the Olympic gold in Athens, the soccer ladies, led by coach Tina Theune-Meyer, have proved they are still a force to be reckoned with on the international pitch. On Saturday they dashed off a 5-0 win against the Czech Republic and secured top-ranking in the women's European Championship qualification rounds. The five-time European champions and last year's world champions are set to defend their title in England next summer. With eight wins in eight games and an overall goal score of 50:2, hardly a European team can beat them.

Saturday's match in Pribram turned out to be the ideal playing field for Theune-Meyer to test her new talent. "It was a good opportunity for the younger players to prove themselves in a real competition. I think they did a great job," she said referring to the likes of Shelley Thomspon, who scored a goal in the 63 minute and Britta Carlson, who drove one home ten minutes before the whistle blew.

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