In the DFB Cup final on Saturday (4:45 p.m. on ARD), Turbine Potsdam in Cologne can turn a good season into a very good one. To do this, however, the team has to master what is probably the toughest task in German football at the moment, because the season ends as it began – with a game against VfL Wolfsburg. The champions from Wolfsburg have won the DFB-Pokal in the last seven years in a row and they are the only team Potsdam have lost both games against in the league.

16,000 tickets have been sold for the final so far. The fan festival starts much earlier at 11.11 a.m. “A day for women’s football” is what Wolfsburg’s coach Tommy Stroot calls the final in Cologne. “We are looking forward to the game and the atmosphere. We worked with concentration. Now we want to give everything and then we’ll see what’s next,” says Turbine’s coach Sofian Chahed.

Despite narrowly missing out on qualifying for the Champions League, they are proud of fourth place in Potsdam and want to crown the strong performance of the season in the last game before the summer break. “The bottom line is that we’ve had a good season and the proof of that is that we’re now in the cup final as a team,” said Turbine goalkeeper Anna Wellmann. “We performed better than the goals we set ourselves.”

Wolfsburg is the clear favorite, but hiding is not an option for Turbine. “We don’t just want to stand in the back and park the bus in front of the gate. That doesn’t make sense over 90 minutes,” says coach Chahed, who has never scored against Wolfsburg as a Turbine coach. “We want to play forward but we still have to defend a bit.” The long-term absence of Selina Cerci, Potsdam’s best player, is of course very painful, especially in a game like this. But the games without Cerci make Chahed optimistic.

“I do think it’s getting denser up there in the Bundesliga,” says Wellmann, but the conditions in Wolfsburg and at Bayern are much better. In fact, Tommy Stroot’s Wolfsburg squad, who extended his contract early during the week, became deeper and not thinner over the course of the season. Goalkeeper Almuth Schult and captain Alexandra Popp came back in the second half of the season and Wellmann could also meet Ewa Pajor, VfL’s best striker.

At turbine, rotation is much smaller. Arguably the most competitive position is between the posts. Coach Chahed never settled on a clear number one throughout the season. Vanessa Fischer made twelve league games, Anna Wellmann ten.

“It was definitely a challenging season,” says Wellmann. It is very unusual not to have a fixed hierarchy in goal and that requires many things like timely and transparent communication. But then the advantages became apparent. The level and excitement could be kept high in the long term. Either you want to prove yourself or fight back into the goal. “I don’t think it’s the normal way, but you can solve it this way,” says Wellmann.

Which of the two will be given preference on Saturday is only known internally so far. But Wellmann has always played in the cup. In the last round in Leverkusen it went down to penalties. At that time there was no practice beforehand. It looks different this time. One or the other player took a ball after training and shot it. “The day before yesterday we did it as a group and everyone had to shoot once.” Turbine also tested against a youth team from cooperation partner Hertha in order to remain tense.

After the cup and season finale, the tension should quickly drop. Wellmann is looking forward to coming together one last time in this constellation: “Then things will actually go in different directions for many,” says Wellmann, meaning the vacation after the season. But that could also be said for the many changes: top scorer Melissa Kössler is drawn to Hoffenheim, the goal for regular players Gina Chmielinksi and Dina Orschmann is still unknown and captain Sara Agrez joins final opponent Wolfsburg.

Agrez’s future colleague and former Turbine player Svenja Huth expects a close game on Saturday. Potsdam is traditionally strong in one-on-one combat, but can also do something with the ball. Huth is certain that there is little to worry about in Potsdam anyway about the future. Despite many departures and arrivals, it still worked there year after year.