(Reuters) - There is one major trophy missing from Dzsenifer Marozsan’s cabinet and next month’s World Cup could not have come at a better time for the Olympic champion and multiple Champions League winner.
With the Germans, who last won the trophy in 2007, eager to work their way back to the world’s elite after losing direction in recent years, Marozsan will play a key role.
The success-spoilt Olympique Lyon playmaker, the best French league player for the last three seasons and a 2016 Olympic champion, is back on the biggest stage after suffering a health scare last year that could have ended her career.
A lung embolism derailed the 27-year-old’s season, forced her out of the game for months and made her consider a future without football before a full recovery saw her return to her very best for club and country.
“I was physically in pain and had to go to hospital and there I was diagnosed with a lung embolism,” she told broadcaster ARD in a rare interview about her health scare that sidelined her for three months.
“The first moment you are shocked and the worst thoughts go through your head. But after a week it was clear that I will fight back, come back stronger.”
After handing back the captaincy under new Germany coach Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, Marozsan, the youngest Bundesliga player at age 15 back in 2007, looks stronger than ever and with her best preparation going into the World Cup.
After winning the French league, Marozsan is chasing yet another treble after her club also won the French Cup, including a personal fourth Champions League title.
Lyon face Barcelona in the final on May 18 in Budapest, her birthplace, before Marozsan joins her Germany team mates for the World Cup preparations.
With 32 goals in 89 appearances for Germany, Marozsan is more than just a playmaker.
She also provides experience and guidance, along with players such as Alexandra Popp and Lena Goessling, to a younger team looking to make a mark on the international stage.
Germany won the 2003 and 2007 World Cups but since then they have only managed a fourth-place finish in 2015.
“You need characters who go out and win a game, who take the lead and the responsibility,” coach Voss-Tecklenburg said. “Players who will look you in the eye when things are rough and tell you what is what.”
Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty