European and Asian Superpower clash
Germany take on China in the first round of the Women's World Cup in France. Will the European powerhouse brush aside the technically skilled Chinese or do the Asian's have an ace up their sleeve?
Die Nationalelf have endured a rough few years where they greatly underperformed in the last World Cup as well at the previous European Championship but travel to France with a strong team looking for revenge.
The German's are brimming with confidence and come well prepared having won 9 out of their last 10 games. Coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg is experienced and with likes of Wolfsburg's Alexandra Propp as well as Lyon's Dzsenifer Marozsan and Carolin Simon there is an abundance of both skill and experience.
In addition to Germany and China group B also contain main contender Spain and South Africa meaning that the Germans probably have to beat China in order to secure a first place finish due to Spain being a force to reckon with.
The Chinese travel to France having lost their last 4 games which is of course never optimal before a huge championship but when you take a look at the calibre of their opponents and the scoreline's everything looks a tad bit better. Among the aforementioned games were narrow defeats to France (2-1), Denmark (1-0) and Holland (penalties after 1-1) so the Chinese should be travelling to France in reasonably high spirits.
However, a loss is a loss no matter how well you perform and the biggest problem for China is that they have lost their last 9 out of 10 games against the top 10 teams which is an indicator that they are simply not good enough.
If they want any chance of qualifying from this group the Chinese have to avoid losing to both Germany and Spain which is a tall order.
Being the superpower they are i cannot do anything but back a German win which is why i will be backing a German (-1) handicap win at 43/50 with Bethard