Every week at The Center Circle, we are highlighting a different player in a feature we call “On the Spot”. We’ll take a look at superstars, underrated gems, aging veterans, and young unknowns who should be known. We’ll peruse their club and international careers, taking note of their teams, statistics, and highlight reels. We’ll illuminate their strengths and weaknesses and comment on their personalities and reputations. It will be some fun. If there is anyone you want to see “On the Spot”, feel free to comment below.
You don’t become the number one ranked team in the world without a solid keeper standing between the posts for you, and that’s exactly what Germany have in Nadine Angerer. The 36-year-old has been a part of the German squad for the past 19 years, claimed countless accolades on the international stage. Will this tournament end with the keeper picking up yet another piece of silverware?
Angerer’s professional career began with arguably the biggest club in Germany, Bayern Munich after moving from FC Wacker Munchen. The keeper’s first season with Bayern’s Frauen Bundesliga side came in 1999 where she helped push the club up from the second division into the top flight. During the 2000-01 campaign, Munich continued to improve as they finished sixth in the table out of 12 teams.
After just two seasons with the club, Angerer moved on to another Bundesliga side Turbine Potsdam, who had finished second in the table the previous campaign. The move to Potsdam would prove to be very beneficial to the keeper’s career as she spent six seasons with the club, amassing 126 appearances in the process. During her six-year stint in Northern Germany, Angerer would claim a UEFA Women’s Cup, two Bundesliga titles, and three German cups.
In 2008, Angerer left her homeland and joined Djurgardens IF in the Swedish league. The brief stay in Scandanavia ended after just one year, and without silverware.
The following year, the German keeper moved back to the Bundesliga and joined a perennial title challenger in FFC Frankfurt. The seven-time league champions were coming off of one of their worst seasons to date, however, as the struggled to a fourth place finish before the arrival of Angerer. In her debut season for Frankfurt, Angerer helped the club climb to third in the table, but again fail to grab any silverware. In her second year with the club, her five-year club trophy drought would come to an end as she helped Frankfurt claim their eighth German cup. Angerer would spend two more years in the Bundesliga with Frankfurt, but the 2011 German Cup would end up being her last trophy in German competition.
Going Down Under
Angerer, in total, spent 18 years plying her trade in Germany, and in 2013 she made a major move to join the Brisbane Roar in Australia. The German keeper nearly tasted success in her first year down under, but the Roar fell just short losing to the Melbourne Victory in the championship match. Despite losing the final, Angerer’s year was still impressive enough to earn her FIFA Player of the Year Honors for 2013.
The German was on the move again the following season, this time joining the Portland Thorns of the NWSL in America. During the 2014 season, Angerer made 22 starts for the Thorns and was the fourth best goalie in the league in terms of saves (74) and shutouts (4). These impressive stats were enough to help Portland qualify for the playoffs, but FC Kansas City eliminated them in the first round.
Angerer’s storied international career began on August 27, 1996 as she started the first half of a friendly match against the Netherlands. Since that day 19 years ago, Angerer has gone onto make 143 appearances for the German national team and claim ten pieces of silverware along the way. Her first international trophy came in just her second year with the national team as they claimed the European Championship, but Angerer failed to make an appearance during the tournament. As Germany’s backup, Angerer would go onto claim six medals, including a World Cup title and two Olympic Bronze medals.
It wasn’t until 2007 that Angerer was finally named as the starting goalie and it was for that year’s World Cup in China. This would serve as a sort of introduction to the world for the keeper as she kept a clean sheet in all three of the group stage matches, and went on to keep a clean sheet in every game of the tournament on the way to her second World Cup winner’s medal. This impressive display also earned her the individual honor of best goalkeeper at the tournament.
In Germany’s next big tournament, the UEFA Women’s Championship, Angerer was again named the starting keeper for the squad and helped the Germans claim a fifth straight European title. In 2011, Angerer had the chance to win her third World Cup title on home soil, but the tournament ended with a very disappointing early exit to Japan in the first knockout stage. Since that disappointing tournament in 2011, Angerer has gone onto claim another European Championship, and her German side currently sits as one of the favorites to claim this year’s crown as they prepare for their quarterfinal matchup against France on Friday (June 26).