As the generation that have done so much for the women’s game start to edge towards the end of their playing careers, it’s time for the next generation to emerge and pick up the baton: new stars, new heroes, new idols. Step forward Jule Brand.

The name Jule Brand may not be one that is all that familiar…yet – although Arsenal Women fans will probably still be having nightmares about her following their Champions League clash with Hoffenheim. This is one of Europe's most exciting prospects who, after four years with her current club, will join two-time Champions League winners Wolfsburg in the summer; a woman who has all the attributes to be a power player of the game. At just 19 years of age she is powerful, athletic, and able to influence the game in a way that has drawn comparisons with some of the greats to have worn the Germany shirt over the years. Having recently signed with adidas – marking another milestone in her burgeoning career – we took the opportunity to get to know the German brand's new German, Brand, a little bit better.

Set the scene for us, how obsessed with football were you as a kid?

I was very obsessed. All of my friends were playing football. So we played at school and after school everyday.

Who introduced you to the game, can you remember those early memories?

I started playing because of my older brother. We were always kicking in our garden and I liked it. One day I went with him to the club for the first time.

First boots, first kit, do you remember those moments? What were they?

I can’t remember those. All I can remember was the fact, that I wore very big shin guards without football socks and had my hair down with a hair band.

Where geographically did you play? Can you tell us about the part of the world you grew up in?

I grew up in a small village near Speyer in the South-West of Germany, the region where my first club was located. As kids we had a small garden with lawn that my brother and I maltreated daily and under all weather conditions.

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It's amazing to see little girls wearing jerseys with your name on the back, like I did back in the day. I play for them as much as I do myself."

What was that first team you played for like?

My home club is the village where I’ve grown up. I’ve played football with all my friends. Because of the small village everything is very close. We all met each other and went to training by bike.

Was there a female team you played for or did you play in a mixed or predominantly male team?

I started playing with boys. After two years I played in parallel with girls. I did this until I moved to Hoffenheim. Also in my second Club in Speyer.

Did you face hurdles in that regard? Did you have to constantly prove people wrong?

Yes I did. When I played with the boys, I often was the only girl. I got some views from the opponent team or I got some patter before the game. I could hear the comments but I’m stronger now because of that time.

How accessible was female football in Germany and how accessible is it now?

For me playing soccer as a girl has never been a problem. I started playing in the team of my brother. Until my change to Hoffenheim I always played in boys teams. Additionally there were teams with girls.

Media accessibility, especially on TV – some good development has already taken place. There is still a way to go but at least you can see the women's Champions League and the Bundesliga completely on TV. But the times of the women's national team matches should be adjusted. During normal weekdays at 2 pm many people don't manage to tune in. That needs to change.

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How has that almost uphill battle helped shape your character would you say?

I do not know how it would be if I did not play with boys. Perhaps in the boys teams I learned how to assert myself. I’m proud of how I carried myself at a young age, it prepares you.

Can you tell us about when it got a little more serious and bigger teams started looking?

I think it started when I was 14, when it started with the U15 national team. At this point I’ve already moved to my second club FC Speyer. It was a partner club of Hoffenheim. So I was in touch with them. But at this point I wanted to stay in Speyer and still play with the boys. So I got transferred one year later.

Did you realise as a kid that being a professional player was a career you could do?

No, I've never thought about that. Of course, it was a dream when I was young. At a young age I always watched the women's national team on TV, so it was that far away. I was never the most talented or hyped player in my age group. There have been other players that were supposed to make it into the national team. I’m here now though and taking every opportunity, owning every moment.

How do you feel about that now? You must have played with people who are working and studying while playing…

I really appreciate that I can live from playing football at the moment and don't have to go to work on the side. It is an absolute privilege at the moment to have turned my hobby into a profession.

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I really like watching players playing the same position as I do. Looking at their skills and strength. I try my best to adapt the skills of players like Mbappe or Leroy Sané."

Does that drive you on even more? The more you work, the more it can almost secure a future for you…

Yes I think talent is not enough, you need many repetitions to have a routine in situations on the pitch, like shooting. That’s why I practice as often as possible. To secure my future is motivation enough to work hard.

What positive changes have you felt in the past few years? Have you felt a positive shift?

I am more in the public eye now. This has its good and its bad sides. But all in all it is a positive shift. It is amazing to see little girls wearing jerseys with your name on the back, like I did back in the day. I play for them as much as I do myself.

What about Germany specifically, can you feel the profile of the game rising here?

I think there is still a lot to do, to push women’s football in Germany. For example, the stadium atmosphere in England is crazy. There are so many supporters for women’s football. But I know a lot of people and players in Germany are very committed to push for a rise.

Teams like Wolfsburg are turning heads, what kind of impact on the game would you say they’ve had here?

If you ask people for important clubs in the world of women's football, Wolfsburg will be called as well as some other clubs. Wolfsburg won the CL two times: that is a great marker.

A lot of strong characters, fashion conscious players too - who are those in the game you look at and have a lot of time for?

On the pitch it is Marcus Rashford. I love his way of playing. Also what he does off the pitch with his foundation is class. Also he knows how to dress.

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Do you have other idols?

I really like watching players playing the same position as I do. Looking at their skills and strength. I try my best to adapt the skills of players like Mbappe or Leroy Sané.

If you could replicate any player's career for yourself, who would that be?

Then I would replicate Alex Morgan's career who won the World Cup and Champions League. And she is an absolute inspiration.

Big teams, a rising profile, international acclaim…what impact would you like to have on the game?

I am an offensive player so I want to score goals or create chances. My style of playing is dribbling and attacking the depth with speed.

Let’s talk off the pitch, footballers these days are much more than simply players, how much do you want to explore the life and adventures that football can bring?

As a football player you have a lot of opportunities to help and inspire people. With the range you can draw attention to various and important topics and reach several people.

How fashion conscious are you? Is that a way you like to express yourself?

I am really interested in fashion. I always watch out for inspirations and trends. Style is part of your personality - so yes it is a way to express myself. I really love dressing really cozy and basic but also to dress up and try different styles. Some are perhaps a bit daring.

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I do not like losing. But you can learn from defeats and get something positive out of it. It serves as motivation to do better next time."

Fashion weeks are all happening now, do things like that jump out to you? Would you like to go to one?

I love the show at fashion weeks. Some clothes are really crazy but it is also an inspiration to dress with confidence. I can see myself getting more and more into that side of things. It’s creative.

adidas is always looking to bring football and fashion closer. How does it feel to become a brand ambassador?

I feel very honoured. adidas is one of the biggest brands in the world and an inspiration for a lot of people. They want their athletes to be able to perform at the highest level and look good, on and off the pitch.

Why adidas? What made them the right fit for you?

We had intensive communications upfront. For me, the Three Stripes are very inspiring and I can identify with them. adidas will support me in reaching my goals. They are very professional and the proximity as DFB partners were some of the reasons to sign with the brand.

How do you look at opportunities like a brand deal? Will you be knocking on their doors to see what more you could do together?

Yes for sure, I am open to having other brand collaborations. At the end it has to fit for both sides. It helps me to reach more people and focus on important topics, like pushing women’s football.

What about the brand's investment in the female game? How can they change the game?

adidas is pushing and investing in the women’s game. They do not make a difference between male and female athletes. So the people recognise it and female athletes can be seen all over the world, too. This means more attention to women’s football.

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All the success so far, let’s talk about international duty. What’s that experience been like?

It’s crazy. Everything went so fast last year. To play on the highest level against the best teams in the world is like a dream come true. You can learn a lot from other players to get on their level.

How much do you want more? Where does your head go when you think of Euro 2022?

I want to improve my skills and get more stability in my game. To get this I have to work very hard. A dream would come true, when I think about representing Germany at a big tournament. It would be my first chance to achieve a professional trophy, so we will work hard to play a big part in this tournament.

How would you describe your mindset and your feelings towards winning? How competitive are you?

Like everyone I like winning more than losing. The evening after you earned three points feels so much better than after a lost match. So for sure in a match I give anything to win.

How much do you hate losing?

I do not like losing. But you can learn from defeats and get something positive out of it. It serves as motivation to do better next time.

With that in mind, how do you want to define this year and your ambitions?

This year there will be a big change in my life. I will move to Wolfsburg and will play for a new club. I will start a new chapter with new challenges ahead.

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Jule Brand wears the adidas X Speedflow .1, which you can pick up at