Balotelli takes Italy to final
- Published: 29/06/2012 at 02:34 AM
- Online news:
Italy out-played and out-scored Germany to take a 2-1 semi-final victory Friday morning and head to the final of Euro 2012 against Spain early Monday.
Balotelli scored twice in the first half to spark the Italian victory over the Germans, who now have failed to defeat Italy in their last eight competitive meetings.
Balotelli scored only his third career goal for Italy to open the scoring in the 19th minute after close chances at both ends of the pitch.
Antonio Cassano worked the ball between two German defenders, then chipped a cross to Balotelli, who headed it neatly behind goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
A sensational goal 16 minutes later was started with a lovely pass from
which caught Balotelli in full, fleet gallop, and the striker ran forward and fired a bullet of a shot that left Neuer flat-footed.
Germany came out hard and fast in the second half. But their attack faded and it was Italy who had the most chances in an exciting but scoreless final 45 minutes.
Germany's only goal of the match came in the 91st minute on a penalty caused by a Federico Balzaretti hand-ball in the area. Mesut Ozil slotted home the goal easily but it was too late and too little.
Match time for Monday morning's final is again 1:45.