Germany 1-2 Italy
Mario Balotelli was Italy's two-goal hero as the Azzurri deservedly beat Germany 2-1 to set up a final clash against Spain on Sunday.
Cesare Prandelli's team were the better team on the night, as Italy continued their habit of beating the Germans at vital stages of the biggest tournaments. They knocked West Germany out of the 1970 World Cup at the semi-final stage before beating them in the 1982 final and in the 2006 last-four clash. Germany had come into the match as favourites but, apart from a ten-minute spell at the second half, Italy were the better team. However, Joachim Low's side should have gone ahead after only six minutes when Mats Hummels failed to get a good connection to a corner, allowing Andrea Pirlo to knock the ball off the line before Gianluigi Buffon gathered. When Italy responded, Manuel Neuer made smart saves from Riccardo Montolivo and Antonio Cassano before Balotelli broke the deadlock in the 20th minute, heading Cassano's cross past the German keeper. Montolivo wasted a great chance to make it 2-0 before Manchester City striker Balotelli doubled Italy's advantage, beating the offside trap before venturing forward and lashing an unstoppable shot past Neuer. Germany made two changes at the break and they started the second half very well, Philipp Lahm, Sami Khedira and Marco Reus all going close to halving the deficit, before Italy restored their grip on the match. Claudio Marchisio and Antonio Di Natale could easily have added further goals for Italy and they had to endure a few nervous seconds when Mesut Ozil netted a stoppage-time penalty after Federico Balzaretti was adjudged to have handled the ball.