There could only ever be one Super Mario in this semi-final and the fact it was Balotelli and not Gomez is probably the shock of the tournament.
But what a thoroughly pleasant surprise it was to see the often troubled Balotelli finally realising his considerable potential on the international stage. It was a moment to savour and enjoy, a moment for the sporting romantics and one that reignited this competition after back-to-back goalless matches that had to be settled by penalty shootouts.
Centre of attention: Mario Balotelli rips his shirt off and poses following his crucial second
Cities & Stadiums
The Top 3 Teams of Previous Tournaments
|2008||Spain||Germany||Russia / Turkey|
|2004||Greece||Portugal||Netherlands / Czech Republic|
|2000||France||Italy||Netherlands / Portugal|
|1996||Germany||Czech Republic||France / England|
|1992||Denmark||Germany||Netherlands / Sweden|
|1988||Netherlands||Soviet Union||Italy / West Germany|
|1984||France||Spain||Denmark / Portugal|
|1972||West Germany||Soviet Union||Belgium|