Germany vs. Italy Recap

After finding the perfect opportunity, the ball is passed to Italy forward Mario Balotelli, who outruns defender Philipp Lahm and scores.

This post is probably one of the harder ones for me to write. Even though the Germany National Team is my favorite during international championships, I must say that they did not play as they usually do at their semifinal against Italy in Warsaw, Poland. In the past, Italy and Germany have met 7 times at international tournaments, and Italy has one every single game. Lukas Podolski, a German forward, vowed that he would help the team break this “curse.” By the end of the second half, Germany realized that their dream has not come true, and their curse has not been broken. The game stats were pretty well balanced, with Germany having 54% possession and 15 shots (8 on target), and Italy having 46% possession and 10 shots (5 on target). Germany had some few promising chances in the first half from Hummels, Kroos, Özil, and Khedira, all which were blocked by Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon. For Italy, some of the attempts proved to be successful. In the 20th minute, Antonio Cassano avoided a challenge and chiped the ball into the penalty area, where Mario Balotelli delivered an excellent header past German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. Just 16 minutes later, a long distance pass was given to Mario Balotelli. Even with the German captain Philipp Lahm at his feet, Balotelli ran toward the net and whipped the ball over Neuer, which sailed into the top-right corner. Other than that, not many shots from the Italians were fired at the goal. In the second half, Germany once again managed to make some nice set-ups for goals, but the balls did not get past Buffon. Marco Reus almost scored off of a free kick, but the goalkeeper deflected the ball with his fingers. Italy also had some good chances, but they couldn’t make a third goal. Finally, after the 90th minute, the ball was handled by Balzaretti in the penalty area, resulting in a penalty kick. Even after Mesut Özil scored, they were unable to score in the last two minutes, resulting in a 2-1 win for Italy. Italy advances forward and will play Spain in the Euro 2012 Final on July 1st.