They say, "behind every successful man, there is a woman," and that phrase can certainly be extended along the lines of "behind every Bundesliga champion, there is a woman."

On International Women's Day, bundesliga.com looks at the role women play in German football.

Rarely noticed, but perhaps one of the most crucial cogs in the Bayern Munich machine, Kathleen Krüger is the records champions' team manager.

Previously under Pep Guardiola and now Carlo Ancelotti, the 31-year-old quietly goes about her work with ruthless efficiency to ensure everything remains in order behind the scenes.

Krüger's enjoys her moment in the spotlight as Bayern celebrate their historic treble in 2013.
Krüger's enjoys her moment in the spotlight as Bayern celebrate their historic treble in 2013. © imago / ActionPictures

A former player with the Bayern ladies, she took up a staff role in 2009 and is now responsible for all administrative issues at the club, which include looking after both male and female players, sponsorship obligations and accommodation.

While the players and officials at the club remain in the limelight, Krüger has stated, "I prefer to do my work in the background."

Watch: Bastian Schweinsteiger gives Krüger a scare ahead of a Bayern game:

She remains the only woman in Bayern's immediate backroom staff, as well as the only female team manager in the Bundesliga.

Bibiana Steinhaus is another distinguished name, on both the domestic and international circuit.

Following in the footsteps of her father, Steinhaus – a police officer by trade - became the first female referee in German professional football, and took charge of her first game in the Frauen-Bundesliga (Women’s Bundesliga) in 1999.

Steinhaus taking charge of the 2011 World Cup final between Japan and the USA.
Steinhaus taking charge of the 2011 World Cup final between Japan and the USA. © imago / Sven Simon

Within two years she was added to the men's Regionalliga, became a FIFA referee in 2005 then officiated her first 2. Bundesliga match in 2007.

After taking charge of the 2003 Women's DFB Cup final between 1. FFC Frankfurt and FSC 2001 Duisburg, Steinhaus later had the honour of officiating the 2011 FIFA World Cup final between Japan and the United States at Eintracht Frankfurt's Commerzbank Arena, as well as the women's Gold Medal Match at the 2012 London Olympics between the same two teams.

Never far from the podium, the Germany women's national team took a maiden gold with victory over Sweden at the 2016 Summer Olympics.

The Germany women's team celebrate their Olympic gold medal at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana Stadium.
The Germany women's team celebrate their Olympic gold medal at Rio de Janeiro's Maracana Stadium. © imago / Rene Schulz

Die Nationalelf are currently ranked second in the world and are second only to the USA in number of World Cup titles won.

Next on the agenda is the defence of their UEFA European Women's Championship crown at EURO 2017 in the Netherlands.

With all but three of Steffi Jones' current squad plying their trade in the Frauen-Bundesliga - the most successful league in Europe in terms of UEFA Women’s Champions League titles (nine) – they have a strong case.