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Aug 17, 2007

Germany - The defending champions

Current World and European Champions Germany will be looking to retain their title in this year's World Cup with head coach, Silvia Neid, leading from the front.

The former assistant coach took over the managerial position from Tina Theune-Meyer in 2005 after steering Germany's U19 side to the world title in Thailand 2004.

It is safe to say that during her playing career Neid experienced both the joys of victory and the despair of defeat; winning three European Championship and seven German league titles but also losing in the finals of the 1995 World Cup in Sweden.

She aims to maintain the high level of success the squad has achieved, as well as keep them firmly rooted at the very top of women's football.

Germany won each of their eight World Cup qualifiers to reach the 2007 tournament in China, dominating their opponents technically, tactically and physically. They netted 31 goals with top scorer and two-time FIFA Women's World Player of the Year, Birgit Prinz, bagging eight goals.

Germany have never failed to qualify for a World Cup Tournament and boast an impressive record. They came fourth in China 1991, were runners-up in Sweden 1995, quarter finalists in USA 1999 before finally winning the world title in the USA four years later.

Now they have come into the competition looking better and stronger than ever before, with top striker Birgit Prinz, world class midfielder Renate Lingor and defender Kerstin Stegemann with over 150 caps playing alongside a squad that has strength that is perhaps unrivalled in the women's game.