Booked: French referee Stephane Lannoy had no option
Germany did improve after the half-time changes, and for a spell in the second half they dominated. But Italy were a league above them last night. At the back they were excellent, and in players like Pirlo and Daniele De Rossi they delivered a passing masterclass — something that will certainly impress the Spaniards.
Pirlo was a ubiquitous presence, even clearing a Mats Hummels effort off the line in the fifth minute.
But if the opening 20th minute goal was the result of a fine piece of attacking football, the defending would have incensed Low. It was not just the way Hummels and Jerome Boateng allowed Antonio Cassano to slip away from them to deliver the cross, it was the abject failure of Holger Badstuber to stop Balotelli scoring with a thumping header.
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|