Mario balotelli after scoring head goal against germany
Italy: Mario Balotelli 20 , 36
Germany: Özil 90+2 (p)
June 28, 2012 7:45 PM BST
Stadion Narodowy — Warszawa
Referee: S. Lannoy
Germany: Mats Hummels
Italy:Leonardo Bonucci,Daniele De Rossi,Mario Balotell,Thiago Motta
05 Hummels Booked
20 Boateng (Mueller – 71′ )
10 Podolski (Reus – 46′ )
23 Gomez (Klose – 46′ )
19 Bonucci Booked
16 De Rossi Booked
18 Montolivo (Motta – 63′ Booked )
09 Balotelli Booked (Di Natale – 69′ )
10 Cassano (Diamanti – 58′ )
14 De Sanctis
11 Di Natale
Germany-Italy Match statistics euro 2012 semi final
If you want to know what has happen through out the match you can read the live commentary here:
90+5′Neuer chrages up for one final free-kick by the halfway line, but Germany play it short! by the time it’s sent into the box the final whistle has been blown! ITALY ARE THROUGH TO THE FINAL!!
90+3′Neuer is now stationed in the centre circle as Germany lay siege to the Italy goal. Hummels is booked for a barge on Barzagli and Italy can breathe again.
90+2′GOAL!! Ozil only takes a one-step run-up, but his penalty is good enough to fly out of the diving Buffon’s reach! They can’t, can they?
90+2′PENALTY!! Balzaretti handles inside the box under pressure from Klose! Is this a lifeline for Germany? Ozil to take it…
90+1′We are in the first of four minutes of added time.
90′Neuer comes up for a Germany corner, but he is soon running back to his own goal after a shot flies wide of Buffon’s goal.
89′Motta now goes into the book, but he won’t mind one jot. Only injury time stands between Italy and the final now.
87′Reaching the final is made all the more remarkable for Italy when taking into account that they finished bottom of their group at the last World Cup below Paraguay, Slovakia and New Zealand.
85′Quick one-two inside the Italy box and Reus has the ball right in front of goal… Another excellent tackle from Balzaretti! He punches the air in delight at his great piece of defence!
84′De Rossi is booked for a foul. It’s his second yellow card of the tournament, but the first was struck off after the quarter-finals so no worries of a suspension for him.
82′Schweinsteiger’s cross is headed away by Bonucci and in the blink of an eye Di Natale is clean through on goal! The veteran striker trundles forward and just as two despairing Germans dive in he shoots into the side netting!
81′First Diamanti and now Di Natale slip over when released down the right channel. That area of the pitch looks very chooped up now.
79′Lovely pass from Pirlo to send De Rossi away down the left. The midfielder hooks the ball into the box but Neuer intercepts.
78′Great tackle from De Rossi as Mueller was preparing to surge into the Italy box.
77′Hummels heads wide from the corner. He looks wholly disappointed with himself as he trots back to his own half.
76′Mueller wins a corner for Germany. Every set piece that is not converted now will start to sap the belief from the German team.
75′Marchisio twists and turns to leave Badstuber flat on his back before firing his low strike inches wide of the far post! Di Natale was screaming for the square pass but Marchisio went for glory.
73′Neuer is closed down as he tries to make a clearance and he is rattled into making an error! He recovered just about to boot the ball out for a throw-in.
72′Both teams have now used all three of their substitutions.
71′Germany substitution: Thomas Mueller repalces Boateng.
70′Italy substitution: Antonio Di Natale replaces Balotelli.
69′Germany put the ball out of play so that Balotelli can receive some treatment. That has not gone down well with the Germany fans in the crowd.
67′Diamanti and Marchisio exchange incisive passes and the Juventus midfielder fires wide! That would have surely been curtains for Germany!
65′Diamanti tries to pick out Balotelli with a long pass, but when he can;t he tries to catch Neuer off his guard with an effort on goal. it’s an easy catch for the keeper in the end.
62′It will be Reus to strike. Plenty of dip and bend on it as it head for the top corner, but Buffon saves well!
61′Bonucci goes into the referee’s book for a foul on Kroos. The free-kick is in a central are, about 25 yards from goal. Schweinsteiger, Ozil and Reus all fancy taking this.
60′Balotelli has the ball on the corner of the Germany area and he has only one intention. He hits a curling low strike that swngs away from the far post.
59′Ozil linking up well with Boateng again down the right. The Bayern full-back’s cross is over the heads of everyone chasing into the box, but that flank looks like a good source of chances for Germany.
56′Klose charges into the area but it’s a well-times tackle from Bonucci that means Italy have only conceded a corner and not a goal.
55′Searing run from Ozil to the byline and he pulls the ball back for Khedira, whose momentum just takes him in front of the ball and he can’t work a chance.
54′Reus’s cross is blocked but it runs to Klose with his back to goal. The veteran striker goes down, but only muted appeals and play continues.
53′In the quarter-final match against Greece, Klose scored his 64th goal in his 120th cap for Germany and he is now just four strikes away from Gerd Mueller’s record of 68 goals for the Mannschaft.
51′Great start to the second half from Germany. They are attacking with real purpose early in this second half.
49′Reus’s pass for Kroos on the edge of the box runs behind him to another Bayern man, Lahm. The Germany skipper plays a one-two with Kroos and sends his sidefooted effort from the edge of the box over the bar!
48′Reus makes an impact early in the second half, showing good feet to create a chance for himself in the box but his low strike is an easy one for Buffon.
47′Germany substitutions: Miroslav Klose and Marco Reus were introduced at half-time for Gomez and Podolski.
46′The second half is underway! What can Germany do to turn this around?
-Nigel Tolentino: “After all those misses, the law of averages owed him a couple of goals. Superb! Balotelli should stay hungry”
-Shaun Moran : “Tony are you aware of the last time Italy lost a match in a major tournament after leading at half time?” – I am now!
-Alex Kovalev: “Balotelli rocks tonight and he well deserved this show.Its maybe his star hour tonight.And all will be influential on his future.”
-Let me know your half-time thoughts by getting in touch
45+2′Half-time is signalled, and Germany go into the break two goals down. Not many would have predicted that before kick-off, but Balotelli’s brace has got Italy dreaming of a place in the final.
45+1′Germany win a corner, but Claudio Marchisio heads it clear as the first defender.
45′Lahm plays the give-and-go down the left. He gets the ball back and crosses it, but Buffon comfortably claims it.
44′Cassaano leaves the field on his feet, and will rejoin play shortly. Germany’s players must be fearing what Joachim Loew is going to say at half-time.
42′Badstuber kicks the ball out play as Cassano is on the floor writhing around in pain.
41′By scoring tonight, Balotelli becomes the first Italian ever to score in the semi-finals of a European Championship. by scoring his second, he is now Italy’s joint-highest all-time scorer at Euros with three, level with Cassano.
39′Podolski’s control lets him down inside the Italy box. He waited for the ball to come to him but he let it go out of play for a goal kick. Germany look rattled.
37′Balotelli celebrates his second goal of the game by whiiping his shirt off and striking a pose. that’s a booking for the striker. Not that he’ll care.
36′GOAL!! Balotelli is onside as he chases a after a long clearance from the Italy half. He controls well and fires an unerring strike right into the top corner from the edge of the box! Fantastic strike!
35′The ball sits up well enough for Khedira to try his luck from range, and he hits a solid strike on target that buffon saves well!
34′Italy defend the corner and soon they are on the attack. Lovely control from Cassano and he slips the ball into the box for Montolivo, who tries to turn but is halted by Badstuber. Why didn;t he hit it on the turn?
33′Ozil sends Boateng scampering away down the right. He skips the challenge of Chiellini before sending in a lovely cross for Podolski that Balzaretti just reaches before him! Corner to Germany.
32′Balotelli teases Badstuber as he shields the ball from him before being hauled down by his shirt. A great performance from the Manchester City striker so far.
31′Boateng concedes a free-kick for a foul on Balotelli, though it’s difficult to know what the referee saw there.
30′Kroos now has a pop from range himself, but his shot is always swinging away from goal and wide.
28′Lovely gliding run forward from Ozil before he picks out Kroos. The midfielder tries to feed his Bayern Munich team-mate Goemz with a reverse pass, but it deflects off an Italy player and out of the striker’s reach.
26′Great strength from Gomez to hold the ball up and tee up Mesut Ozil for a strike from 20 yards, but the Germany playmaker tries to pass it into the net and Buffon gets down to make the save.
25′This may be an appropriate time to remind you that Germany have never beaten Italy in a competitive game in seven previous attempts.
24′Gomez steals half a yard off his marker but is unable to glance his header on target. Good response from Germany.
22′This is the first time Germany have been behind in a competitive game since the third-place play-off match against Uruguay at the last World Cup! They went 2-1 down, but came back to win 3-2.
21′A very rare sight here – Balotelli has a beaming smile and looks ecstatic in his celebration! such a marked change from his usual blank expression, but you can see why. That’s a huge goal, only his third for his country.
20′GOAL!! Great work from Cassano as he wriggles between two German players on the left before his chipped cross is headed past Neuer by Balotelli!
19′Germany’s last seven goals at Euro 2012 have been scored by seven different players, while no Italian player has scored more than one.
18′Cassano with a good curling effort from 20 yards that Neuer sees all the way and catches with two hands. The game is really starting to open up now.
17′The half-German Montolivo shifts to the right of the all-German Schweinsteiger and shoots from the edge of the box. The effort bounces up in front of Neuer, who makes a good save.
16′A slick turn from Jerome Boateng in his own half helps Germany win possession back.
15′Kroos cuts in from the right, works half a yard off Montolivo and has a pop from range that Buffon beats away two-handed.
14′Balotelli draws a foul from Hummels, who concedes a free-kick for the first time in this tournament!
13′Italy defend Germany’s short corner well enough, but that was another nervy moment early on for the Azzurri.
12′Khedira was an incisive run forward before laying it off to Toni Kroos out wide. The low cross comes in and Buffon spills it! The ball bounces off Andrea Barzagli and trickles just wide of the post!
11′Sami Khedira tries to float a ball into the box that goes all the way through to Buffon. Worring sign for Italy as De Rossi takes a few seconds to get back to his feet following a challenge. The Roma midfielder was an injury doubt before the game with a back problem.
10′Great tackle on Balotelli from Hummels. The Borussia Dortmund defender has been one of Germany’s top performers in this tournament.
9′Played inside by Cassano and the ball comes to Pirlo. The midfielder tries to deceive Badstuber with a drop of the shoulder but the centre-back blocks the shot.
8′Daniele De Rossi is fouled by Podolski in the centre circle. Italy play it short to get it to Pirlo’s feet.
7′Lukas Podolski goes on a rampaging run down the left channel. He slaloms through two blue shirts but Balzaretti is one man too many.
6′Schweinsteiger swings the corner in and it comes to Mats Hummels on the edge of the six-yard box. He guides it past Buffon and Pirlo blocks it on the line! Buffon gathers the loose ball gratefully!
5′Federico Balzaretti charges into Schweinsteiger with a solid challenge that yields the first corner of the match for Germany.
4′A through ball is slipped forward for Balotelli, but Manuel Neuer is quick off his line to gather the pass.
3′Balotelli chases after a ball over the top and is judged to have shoved Holger Badstuber in the back as he did so.
2′Bastian Schweinsteiger is screaming for the ball from the edge of the box, but Lahm chooses to cross to Mario Gomez instead and the ball sails over the striker’s head.
1′Italy mentally-unhinged front pairing of Antonio Cassano and Mario Balotelli get us underway!
If you want to know what has happen through out the match you can read the live commentary here:
Spain become only the second team to reach a third major tournament final in succession after a 4-2 penalty victory over Portugal. They will play Germany or Italy in the final.
-FABREGAS SCORES! In off the inside of the post and Spain go into the final! Ronaldo didn’t even get the chance to take the fifth!
-Fabregas to win it for Spain…
-ALVES HITS THE BAR! This time it is his turn and he smacks his penalty against the woodwork! 3-2 Spain.
-RAMOS DOES A PANENKA! Take that, Pirlo! 3-2 Spain.
-NANI SCORES! Bizarrely the United man stops Alves going up and sends him back to the half-way line as he runs up instead. He finds the roof of the net. 2-2.
-PIQUE SCORES! A lovely spot kick from the defender as he tucks it inside the post. 2-1 Spain.
-PEPE SCORES! It’s a fine pen from the Madrid defender against his club-mate. Right in the corner. 1-1.
-INIESTA SCORES! The Barca star sends the keeper the wrong way. 1-0 to Spain.
-CASILLAS SAVES FROM MOUTINHO! The Spain keeper responds with a fine stop of his own, to the right this time. 0-0.
-PATRICIO SAVES FROM ALONSO! A wonderful stop from the keeper and he throws himself to his left. 0-0
-Spain won the toss and will take the first spot kick.
-You can check both teams’ penalty shoot-out records in our article
120′FULL TIME. 0-0 after extra time so penalties it is. Spain could have won the game in extra time but we have spot kicks.
120′Arbeloa hurtles to the byline to pull the ball back for Iniesta in the box but Portugal clear. Just seconds left now.
119′A lovely run from Pedro as he slaloms into the centre of the box and for a moment looks to have the chance to go down and win a penalty. He stays up though and Portugal are able to clear.
118′Alba, who has been superb tonight, whips in a cross, only for Pepe to get in front of Fabregas and clear. The usual disciplinary lapses aside, Pepe has had a great game.
117′Iniesta is called offside before he slides a pass back to Pedro but that was a suspect decision.
115′Spain waste a huge chance! Fabregas plays in Pedro with a gorgeous pass. He takes a couple of touches when seemingly through on goal but has to check right, allowing Coentrao to come across and make a crucial clearance.
114′Alonso goes into the book for a clumsy, high challenge on Ronaldo. No argument there.
114′Portugal make their final change as Meireles is replaced by Silvestre Varela.
112′Navas darts to the right of the box and hammers in a low effort that Patricio palms out. Pepe takes a touch on the loose ball and the keeper grabs it, but the referee decides it wasn’t a pass-back. Hmm. That was a close one.
110′Busquets slips a pass square to Fabregas and his effort loops up off Alves and into the arms of Patricio. Spain look like they want to win this game before penalties.
109′It’s very tense now, but we are just 11 minutes way from Spain’s grip on international football being decided by spot-kicks.
107′Portugal break down the left and try to cut the ball back for Ronaldo, but Spain clear in the centre of their own box.
-Veloso, out on his feet, is replaced by Custodio in the Portugal midfield.
105+2HALF TIME IN EXTRA TIME. Patricio’s excellent save from Iniesta keeps Portugal in the game at 0-0.
105+1Ramos takes the free kick and his thunderous effort sneaks just past the woodwork. A fantastic attempt.
105+1Pepe is beginning to lose it. He brings Iniesta to ground and then has a little kick out at Pedro. Free kick to Spain.
104′Huge chance for Spain! Just seconds after Navas hooks a shot wide, Alba does superbly to wriggle his way into space in the box and cut a pass back for Iniesta, who sees his first-time shot palmed clear by Patricio.
103′Oliveira turns quickly away from Arbeloa put can’t keep the ball under control as he attempts to hurt Spain on the break. A brief flash of interest in an otherwise rather painful game.
101′Pepe, already booked of course, was perhaps lucky to get away with that. Having been given a reprieve he smacks a 50-yad pass out of play.
100′The referee stops play after Pedro goes down. Replays show he caught Pedro with his arm. That’s a move straight out of his Clasico playbook. Dirty.
98′Ronaldo thunders forward down the left but Pique comes across with an excellent challenge to halt his Liga rival on the edge of the box.
97′Spain apply pressure. Pedro causes problems down the Spain left and the ball pops out to Iniesta, who from 25 yards sees his low effort blocked.
96′Ronaldo heads clear from Alonso’s delivery though as Portugal stand firm.
95′Moutinho sticks out a leg to take the ball away from Iniesta and is ridiculously punished for a foul. That was a good tackle. Anyway, free kick to Spain…
94′The pace has dropped out of this game. It appears as though we are set for one of those periods of extra time where caution is the watchword.
92′Portugal still have two changes while Spain have made all three of theirs. I wonder if that will play into Bento’s hands.
90+3′FULL TIME. It’s 0-0 after a fairly dire encounter so far – one shot on target from either side – so we have extra time here in Donetsk.
90+3′Veloso is the fifth Portugal player on a yellow card after going in low and hard on Alba.
90+2′Spain have a corner but in the space of two passes the ball is back with Casillas. He doesn’t look rushed.
90+1′We will have three minutes of added time.
90′Portugal waste a huge chance! They hit Spain on the break and suddenly find themselves three v two. The ball is played out to Ronaldo but he hammers a shot off target. That was a great opportunity to topple Spain.
89′Well, this hasn’t been a classic by any means, has it? Hardly any shots on target and if that doesn’t change then we have extra time awaiting us.
87′Shock! Xavi is taken off as Spain bring on Pedro to provide more penetration.
86′Alves is the latest player to earn a booking as he is penalised for a blatant foul on Fabregas. Portugal have been a bit dirty.
85′Ronaldo is given another go but his radar is off again as his effort soars over. Casillas looks relieved – he knows better than most what Ronaldo can do from that range.
84′Ronaldo’s free kick is blocked by the arm of Arbeloa, who is booked for raising his arms to stop the attempt.
83′Poor from Navas as he takes too long to try and play a cross in and Alves is able to clear. Portugal race up the other end of the pitch through Ronaldo and draws a foul from Alonso.
81′Almeida is finally replaced as Nelson Oliveira comes off the bench.
80′A very poor free kick from Veloso wastes a decent chance for Portugal after Ramos is penalised for a foul on Nani. This is now a pretty bad game.
79′Replays show that a shot from Nani caught the arm of Busquets in the box. Some referees would have given this.
78′Spain work the ball to Fabregas but his shot is well off target. That’s a poor attempt from the Barcelona man.
77′Alves with a filthy challenge on Fabregas but he somehow escapes a booking. He basically just kicked him to the floor.
76′Under 15 minutes to go and if Portugal can nick a goal then Spain’s reign in international football could well come to an end. It’s been a game bereft of chances but Ronaldo just needs a glimpse of goal.
75′Moutinho with a fine interception in midfield. He is just one letter away from being a Special One, but this has been a superb performance from the Portugal star.
73′Ronaldo lines the free kick up in typical fashion and gets the necessary velocity. However, the ball doesn’t dip as Ronaldo wants it to and flies over the bar.
72′Ronaldo dribbles into a central area, only to be brought to ground by Arbeloa. Ronaldo hasn’t really made his mark on this contest yet but this is in a good position and Casillas looks apprehensive.
70′Naughty. Pereira has a little kick out at Alba after tackling the Spain left back. He gets away with it though.
69′Oh dear. Almeida at it again. This time the striker blasts one off target from the left of the box as Nani is left frustrated. His finishing has been terrible tonight.
68′Spain have their first shot on target as Xavi drives an effort into the chest of Patricio from 25 yards. That was easy for the keeper.
67′It’s been at least three days since Xabi Alonso has tried to score from the half-way line, so the midfielder duly obliges. Not even close.
65′Xavi’s delivery is excellent but Almeida gets a firm head to the ball and puts it behind for a corner. Portugal clear from the second set-piece.
65′Pereira is booked for a sneaky foul on Fabregas as he tried to burst into the box. Spain have a free kick right on the edge of the box.
63′Stat from Opta: “Five of Spain’s eight goals at Euro 2012 have come in the last 30 minutes of play.”
61′Pepe goes into the book when clattering into Madrid team-mate Alonso with an aerial challenge. Alonso requires treatment.
60′A second change for Spain as Jesus Navas comes on for the ineffective Silva.
59′Ronaldo wants a penalty when falling to the ground under minimal contact from Ramos. Busquets is annoyed and his complaints earn him a booking.
59′Ronaldo lays the ball off to Almeida in the left-hand channel and again he proves to be rather selfish when hammering a shot wide from the tightest of angles.
58′The ball breaks kindly for Almeida and he drives forward before thumping a shot over the bar from 25 yards. He had Ronaldo and Nani as options on the flanks though.
56′Alonso takes possession on the edge of the centre circle, looks forward but can’t spot any options in front of him. Portugal win possession and Pique cuts out a Moutinho pass for Ronaldo.
55′So Spain settle back into the 4-6-0 formation they have employed for so much of this tournament. It should see their possession stats rise steadily at least.
54′Negredo comes off after making no impact on the game. Here is Fabregas as the false nine.
53′Fabregas is getting ready on the bench so that could be the end of Negredo for tonight.
52′Now it is Portugal’s turn to apply pressure but the corner from Moutinho is poor as it flies in low. Spain make a mess of the attempted clearance but it goes behind for a goal-kick.
51′Spain win a first corner of the game when an Arbeloa cross is headed behind but they can’t exploit it to test Patricio in the Portugal goal.
50′Vicente del Bosque had no fear yesterday in building up the importance of this game but so far Spain haven’t risen to the occasion. They have been a bit lacklustre.
49′Portugal put pressure on Spain when attacking the box but Ramos produces a good headed clearance.
48′Xavi checks his run at the same time Alonso tries to play him in with a snappy pass. Alonso reacts by grabbing his face in frustration. Spain are strangely off-key tonight.
47′A more low-key start to the second half. Spain want to get their foot on the ball.
46′No changes from either side, though I suspect Negredo won’t last much longer if he continues to be anonymous.
-Why not come and say hello on Twitter at half time?
45+2′HALF TIME. It’s goalless but Portugal have been very impressive. Spain are far from their best.
45+1′Spain win a free kick when Bruno Alves charges into Negredo from behind. That was very clumsy. Xavi dinks the ball forward and though Pique heads back across goal, Patricio plucks it out of the air.
45′Pepe is getting himself involved with the match officials, no surprise there, but it is Coentrao who is booked. The reason is a mystery but we think it is for dissent.
43′Stat from Opta: “Spain have won just two of their last 12 games against Portugal. Fourteen of Spain’s 16 wins against Portugal occurred before 1960.”
42′Moutinho races 30 yards to win the ball back again. This has been some performance from the Porto man so far.
41′Ronaldo throws himself to the ground when bouncing off the back of Ramos and this time the Spain defender is booked for blocking off an opponent and preventing a Portugal break.
39′Portugal play it out from the back from Patricio. It’s really nice to see a side take on Spain on their own terms. Funnily enough it makes for a good contest.
38′Silva springs into action when driving through the centre of the pitch but while he spots the clever run of Iniesta, his pass has too much on it and rolls through to Patricio.
36′Stat from Opta: “Portugal and Spain have met three times in a major tournament, winning once each and drawing the other game.”
35′Ouch. Nani catches a nasty one in the face when colliding with the back of Ramos on the far side. I think it would be unfair to suggest he meant it, but the Spain defender wasn’t exactly trying to get out of the way.
33′Portugal are playing the ball around with real confidence and have benefited from a positive approach. One wonders what France must be thinking have surrendered to Spain in the quarter-finals.
31′A gorgeous pass from Moutinho – who has been excellent so far – finds Pereira wide on the right. Alba takes possession but then loses the ball to Moutinho, who plays in Ronaldo. The shot is low and hard but drifts just wide.
30′Silly refereeing. Nani was on the charge but the ref pulled the game back for a foul. Advantage should have been played.
29′The best chance of the game so far! Negredo fizzes a pass central to Xavi, who lays it off again to Iniesta. His first touch gives him space and he opens up his body before curling an effort just over the bar. Nice from Spain.
28′Replays show the ball struck the chest of Ramos before bouncing down and hitting the lower part of his arm. There’s no way that could be construed as deliberate and therefore there is no way it can be a penalty.
27′Brilliant pressing from Portugal now. Moutinho twice had Pique under pressure and when the ball comes into the box again, Portugal appeal for a penalty when claiming it struck the arm of the falling Ramos. We will need a replay.
26′Joao Pereira and Nani combine well down the right but when the full back swings in a cross, Pique extends his leg to deflect the ball clear. Promising again from Portugal though.
25′Portugal are doing a good job here of unsettling Spain. Del Bosque’s side haven’t settled into their familiar rhythm just yet and look vulnerable to an extent on the counter. Fascinating so far.
24′A glorious backheeled flick from Joao Moutinho from a Ramos clearing header bounces to Ronaldo but his first time volley on the turn soars over the bar. That would have been some goal for Portugal.
23′Pique charges forward to combine with Negredo but the latter loses the ball, leaving Spain exposed. Almeida makes a clever run into space through the centre but Ronaldo doesn’t spot it and is closed down.
22′Whistles greet a sustained spell of Spain possession – Portugal fans, or locals who have bought into the myth that Spain are somehow a boring side?
21′Xavi is starting to see more of the ball now and as a result Spain are exerting more control in midfield. However, Silva fails to keep a long pass in play.
20′Nani launches a counter-attack but is brought down in cynical fashion. Strangely the referee lets Ramos off the hook, even if the fall was a touch theatrical.
19′Stat from Opta: “Portugal are making their fourth semi-final appearance at European Championship finals (1984, 2000, 2004), while they have only managed to reach the final once, on home soil in 2004.”
18′Pressure from Portugal as they whip a corner in and Hugo Almeida is then penalised for a mystery foul in the box. This has been nice and open so far and Portugal look keen to take the game to Spain – which cannot be said of most of their opponents.
17′It’s a poor effort from the greasy one though as he slams his set-piece into the wall. Still, Spain would be well advised to avoid giving away fouls in those kinds of areas.
16′Arbeloa and Pique combine to chop down Ronaldo just outside the box. This is a free kick in a decent position for Portugal, and Ronaldo will take it.
15′Good persistence from Arbeloa as he tries to sneak past Coentrao but he has to resort to a foul on the Portugal left-back.
14′Now Portugal try to play in Ronaldo again with a long ball over the top but the captain watches it fly over his head and towards club-mate Casillas.
13′Ronaldo makes his first mark on the game. Portugal launch a counter-attack down the left and the forward races into space before pulling the ball back with a fine cross. However, Casillas comes to claim, preventing Nani from getting on the end of it at the back post.
12′Veloso halts a promising run from Negredo, who hasn’t seen a lot of the ball in these early stages. There is a lot of pressure on the striker today after he was chosen ahead of Fabregas, Torres and Llorente.
11′Stat from Opta: “Spain have completed 2623 passes so far at Euro 2012, more than double as many as Portugal (1159).”
10′Suddenly Spain are all over Portugal and Iniesta thumps a shot off target from 30 yards or so. Vicente del Bosque’s side are on top now.
9′Iniesta drifts into the box from the left and his pass doesn’t quite make it to Negredo. However, the ball runs free in the box and Arbeloa meets it with a side-footed effort that slides just over the bar. Not the man you want to meet the ball really.
9′Silva gifts possession to Portugal but Alba presses with venom and claims the ball back. Spain work the ball forward but Silva cannot find a team-mate after finding space in the box.
8′Xabi Alonso finds a pocket of space for the first real time and tries to play in Silva with a cute ball over the top. However, the Manchester City star can’t get the ball under control and Patricio can deal with the danger.
7′We get a first look at Jordi Alba, who is on the brink of signing for Barcelona from Valencia. The left-back, who loves to bomb forward, plays a one-two with Iniesta and later wins a free-kick.
6′Stat from Opta: “Spain have conceded just one goal so far at Euro 2012, fewer than any other side.”
6′Bruno Alves spots Nani in space on the right wing and flings a long diagonal pass out to the winger. However, Nani miscontrols when trying to bring the ball down on his thigh and it runs out for a throw.
5′David Silva slips a pass forward to Negredo, who drifts to the right of the box and tries to play the ball square. However, Pepe does well to throw out a leg and block.
4′Spain, as ever, as pressing with great enthusiasm right from the front and Andres Iniesta chases down Pepe, putting pressure on the defender before he plays it back to Rui Patricio.
3′Veloso himself takes the corner and Iker Casillas stretches to tip the ball out for another corner. This time Raul Meireles takes the set-piece from the opposite side and Casillas comes to catch.
2′Portugal try to put pressure on the Spain right and when the ball comes central Miguel Veloso sees a long-range effort deflected out for a corner.
italy celebrate their shout out win aganist england euro 2012
Goal Scorer: (penalty shoot out)
England :120+2′ (PSO) Steven Gerrard,120+4′ (PSO) Wayne Rooney
Italy: Mario Balotelli 120+1′ (PSO), Andrea Pirlo 120+5′ (PSO), Antonio Nocerino 120+7′ (PSO), Alessandro Diamanti 120+9′ (PSO
Italy: Andrea Barzagli, Christian Maggio
England: No cards
June 24, 2012 7:45 PM BST
NSK Olimpijs’kyj — Kyiv (Kiev)
Referee: Pedro Proença
Englan vs italy match statistics euro 2012
If you want to know what has happen through out the match you can read the live commentary here:
2-4ITALY WIN! Alessandro Diamanti sends Hart the wrong way and Italy reach the semi-finals of Euro 2012 via a 4-2 victory on penalties.
2-3ENGLAND MISS! Cole’s effort is saved, low to his left by Buffon.
2-3Nocerino with a stutter and calmly places his shot into the left corner.
2-2ENGLAND MISS! Young smashes his effort against the crossbar.
2-2Pirlo with a Panenka chip down the middle. Class!
2-1Rooney smashes his penalty into the left corner.
1-1ITALY MISS! Montolivo drags his effort well past the post.
1-1Gerrard in the same corner, past Buffon.
0-1Balotelli stutters and then strokes the ball into the corner, past the diving Hart.
-Here we go, it will be Balotelli with the opening penalty.
-Italy have been involved seven penalty shoot-outs at European Championships and World Cups, winning two (Euro 2000 semi-final vs Netherlands and 2006 World Cup final vs France).
-England have been involved in six penalty shoot-outs, winning only one (vs Spain in the quarter-final at Euro 1996).
120′FULL-TIME: We will have a penalty shoot-out.
119′Gerrard seems to win the ball cleanly but Diamanti wins the free-kick and Maggio’s cross is cut out by Henderson before Hart clears.
118′Pirlo finds Maggio whose cross finds Nocerino before Montolivo’s shot from outside the penalty area is dragged well wide of Hart’s goal.
117′Italy win a corner but Diamanti’s delivery drifts out for a goal kick.
116′This is one-way traffic. England have been camped inside their own half for almost the entire extra-time period.
115′ITALY GOAL OFFSIDE! Diamanti’s cross from the right is headed home from close range by Nocerino but he is correctly ruled offside. England hearts in mouths there.
114′Balzaretti fizzes a ball across the area and finds Diamanti who cannot direct his effort on target from 10 yards. A real chance for the former Hammer, the best of extra-time.
113′Diamanti finds Maggio in space on the right but his shot is charged down by Cole.
112′Pirlo leaves it to Balotelli who blazes his 25-yard shot high into the evening sky.
111′Marchisio wins a free-kick after a pretty tame tackle from Carroll. Pirlo can put one in the mixer.
110′Two vital defensive headers from Carroll back in his own penalty area and England continue to hang on.
109′Maggio impeded by Young and Diamanti will be able to swing over a free-kick from a dangerous position on the right.
108′Diamanti looks to curl one into the top corner, having cut in from the right, but way off target with his left foot.
107′Maggio gets to the by-line and Lescott slips but Terry can clear the cross.
106′Here we go for the final 15 minutes.
105+1That is half-time in extra-time. We are now just 15 minutes away from a penalty shoot-out.
105′Walcott bursts into the penalty area but just too much purchase on his dink to the back post intended for Carroll.
104′For the record, England had the best shot conversion rate in the group stages (21.7%).
103′The atttempts on goal count is now 30-9 in Italy’s favour, they have also had 62% of possession.
102′DIAMANTI HITS THE POST! It is probably a mis-hit cross from the sub but Hart dives full length to his right and cannot reach it, he is grateful as he sees the ball hit the outside of the post.
101′Another shot by Balotelli but straight at Hart from 20 yards.
100′Balotelli’s shot loops off Terry and into the grateful hands of Hart.
99′Ambitious effort from Balotelli and it is charged down…. as so many Italian shots have been tonight.
98′Carroll finds Young but his cross, intended for Rooney, is too high and Buffon claims.
97′A long ball over the top is inches away from being brought down by Balotelli who would have been clean through on goal, having sprung the England offside trap.
96′Diamanti’s cross is cut out by Lescott and England can break through Walcott but Rooney is outnumbered on the edge of the penalty area.
95′An exhausted Parker is replaced by Henderson who was not in the original 23.
94′Maggio booked for a foul from behind on Young and will miss the semi-final if Italy progress.
93′Jordan Henderson is poised to come on for England.
92′Nocerino fires over the top from 25 yards after a spell of sustained Italy possession.
91′Here we go for extra-time. England v Italy is the first game at Euro 2012 to be goalless after 90 minutes.
90+4′FULL-TIME! We head into extra-time. England have rode their luck but are still alive in Euro 2012.
90+3′CHANCE FOR ENGLAND! Young feeds Cole on the overlap, his cross is high but Carroll can just about head back across goal for Rooney whose bicycle kick is over the bar.
90+2′Pirlo’s shot is blocked by Parker and Walcott can break to give England some respite.
90+1′Ignazio Abate is replaced by Cristian Maggio.
90′Three minutes of added time to be played.
89′England deal with the corner as we head towards time added on.
88′SUPERB BLOCK BY JOHNSON! Marchisio’s superb pass finds Nocerino who brings the ball down first time but his shot from close range is blocked by Johnson on the cover.
87′For once Pirlo’s pass for Abate is too strong.
86′Carroll’s shot is charged down from 20 yards before Parker fails to find Walcott with what should be a simple pass.
85′Italy playing keep ball as we enter the last five minutes.
84′Balzaretti is back with us. Parker was denied the chance to get a cross in as the referee deemed it was a head injury.
83′Gerrard’s free-kick into the penalty area and Terry’s shirt is being held before Parker’s shot is charged down by Balzaretti who needs treatment.
82′Barzagli sees yellow for what is deemed an aggressive tackle on Young, he wins the ball but his studs are on the top of the ball. The first yellow of the match.
81′Diamanti shoots on the turn from 20 yards with his left foot and Hart makes a sharp stop, diving down to his left.
80′Another change for Italy as Antonio Nocerino replaces De Rossi.
79′Marchisio’s cross comes off Parker and Hart punches it off the head of Balotelli for a corner.
78′A change as former West Ham man Alessandro Diamanti replaces Cassano.
77′Carroll wins a free-kick and Gerrard’s cross really should have been met by Rooney but he seems to jump underneath the ball with Andrea Barzagli tracking him.
76′The shot count is 20-5 in Italy’s favour.
75′Then Marchisio sees his shot charged down by Terry.
74′Pirlo’s effort from distance is blocked by Lescott.
73′On the contrary, in nine quarter-final matches at the European Championships or World Cup finals, Italy have only been knocked out twice and both times have been on penalties.
72′Gerrard needs treatment for cramp, not a good sign with potentially another 50 minutes to be played.
71′Remember England have lost seven out of eight quarter-final games at major tournaments away from Wembley with the Italia 1990 victory against Cameroon the only exception.
70′England struggle to maintain possession again but De Rossi fails to pick out Cassano with his ball over the top.
69′Pirlo to Abate is a ball that seems always to be on but for once Young prevents the cross.
68′Carroll is certainly putting himself about since coming on, he concedes another free-kick.
67′De Rossi’s blast at goal is headed away by Lescott….he would have felt that.
66′Balotelli feeds Marchisio whose shot from the edge of the penalty area is blocked by Terry.
65′A real melee in the area from the resulting corner but Carroll is the man penalised.
64′England’s best chance of the second-half! Walcott’s cross is intended for Carroll but falls to Young whose shot is deflected behind for a corner. The Liverpool striker already causing some headaches.
63′Pirlo picks out De Rossi at the far post but he volleys wide, a more acute angle this time.
62′England have just caught an opposition forward offside for the first time in the entire tournament.
61′Milner and Welbeck are the men to make way for the subs.
60′Balotelli holds off Terry in the penalty area and his attempted bicycle kick is over the crossbar but a great effort.
59′Andy Carroll and Theo Walcott are poised to come on.
58′A clash of heads between Abate and Young and both need treatment.
57′Cassano’s dink to the back stick is retrieved by Balzaretti but he fails to capitalise and some respite for England.
56′Crucial clearing header by Lescott from Pirlo’s corner.
55′Pirlo allowed too much time to pull the strings and Cole is forced to concede a corner.
54′Italy are dominating now. Hodgson may look to change things soon. Young, in particular, has been poor.
53′Milner’s 25-yard shot fails to test Buffon.
52′ENGLAND’S GOAL LEADING A CHARMED LIFE! A 30-yard blast from De Rossi is parried by Hart straight into the path of Balotelli who is denied from close range by the legs of his Eastlands team-mate before Montolivo volleys over under pressure from Johnson.
51′Parker loses the ball deep in his own penalty area and Abate’s cross is crucially flicked away at the back post by Terry.
50′Rooney commits defenders and Abate is forced to conceded a corner which is headed away by Bonucci.
49′DE ROSSI MISSES A SITTER! Hart punches Pirlo’s corner away, it is turned back into the penalty area by Montolivo and De Rossi, unmarked, volleys wide from six yards.
48′Abate gets to the by-line and Johnson is forced to turn the cross away at the far post before conceding a corner.
47′Parker finds Rooney in the penalty area almost immediately but he can’t get a shot off and then Milner tricks Balzaretti but can’t pick out a team-mate in the box.
46′Here we go for the second-half.
45′HALF-TIME! The end of a highly entertaining opening period. Good chances aplenty for both sides but no goals yet.
44′By scoring against Ireland, Balotelli became only the second Italian player to score for his country at a European Champtionship or World Cup while not representing an Italian club.
43′Balotelli looks to make amends for his miss and unleashes a 30-yard blast that is not too far over the crossbar.
42′Italy make a complete hash of a free-kick and England can break but Rooney’s cross from the left fails to find a team-mate in the penalty area.
41′BALOTELLI MISSES SITTER! Pirlo’s cross to the back post is headed across goal by Cassano and somehow Balotelli stabs over the top from four yards. He kicks the post in frustration. He was under pressure from Lescott but should have scored.
40′Balotelli goes down cheaply in the penalty area but certainly no spot kick.
39′Cassano lets fly from 25 yards, good contact and he stings Hart’s fingertips with the shot but in truth a comfortable save from the England #1.
38′Rooney is angry at Mr Proenca after no free-kick is awarded following a tackle from behind by De Rossi.
37′England very much playing the containing, counter-attacking game we saw in the group stages.
35′De Rossi’s through ball is cut out by Johnson on the edge of his own penalty area.
34′Italy have completed 100 more passes than England so far.
33′Cassano cuts inside from the left but drags his shot wide of the near post, no trouble for Hart.
32′WASTEFUL WELBECK! Great break by England and inter-play between Rooney and Welbeck but the youngster leans back on his shot from 18 yards and fails to test Buffon.
31′A superb lift over the England defence by Montolivo and the ball sits up for Balotelli who attempts to scissor kick the ball towards goal but fails to get much power on his effort and Hart saves.
30′England have managed just one win from their last nine games against Italy but an even opening half hour.
29′Gerrard outmuscles Cassano on the edge of the penalty area. Italy have most of the possession right now.
28′Speculative long-range effort from Montolivo fails to test Hart.
27′Both Italy and England scored the opening goal in each of their first three games, with Germany the only other team to have managed to do so. Something must give tonight.
26′BALOTELLI WASTES CHANCE! Balotelli is played onside by Johnson and is in acres of space 30 yards from goal but Terry gets back to make a crucial block.
25′Milner’s cross from the right is intended for Rooney but superbly headed away by Bonucci.
24′Neat turn from Montolivo but he over runs the ball on the edge of the penalty area and Lescott can step in.
23′Cassano tries his luck from 25 yards but his effort is a long way wide of Hart’s far post.
22′Pirlo’s corner is headed away at the near post by Welbeck. It was not too far away from reaching Bonucci.
21′Cassano looks to pull the trigger from 20 yards but England have bodies back and his attempt is blocked. But Italy then win their first corner.
20′Gerrard swings the ball into the penalty area, aiming for Rooney, but too strong.
19′Montolivo attempts to loft the ball over the England defence but a good starting position from Hart who reaches the dink ahead of Cassano.
18′Pirlo’s delivery is too deep and although it reaches Balzaretti, the cross from the full-back drifts behind for a goal kick.
17′Lescott fouls Manchester City team-mate Balotelli out on the right touchline which will allow Pirlo the chance to swing over a dangerous ball.
16′Rooney powers past Pirlo down the right but his cross drifts behind for a goal kick.
15′Balzaretti’s cross is cleared by Gerrard in his own area.
14′ROONEY HEADS OVER! A wonderfully clipped ball into the penalty area by Johnson and Rooney meets the cross with a diving header but cannot direct his header on target from eight yards although he was under pressure from covering right-back Ignazio Abate.
13′Buffon elects to punch under no real pressure and Parker returns the ball with interest from 30 yards but well wide.
12′Johnson beats two and gets to the by-line but his cross is too high for Rooney.
11′Wayne Rooney’s low cross is aimed for Welbeck but Leonardo Bonucci puts it behind for a corner. From the corner, Rooney hits the floor under pressure from Bonucci but never a penalty.
10′Ashley Young swings a cross from the left to the back post but Balzaretti out leaps Milner.
9′Gerrard’s low ball into the penalty box is comfortably cleared.
8′Italy have only been knocked out at the quarter finals of a major tournament on two of the nine occasions that they have reached this stage – both times on penalty kicks (Euro 2008 v Spain and World Cup 1998 v France).
7′That was a great chance for Johnson but the ball got stuck under his feet and Buffon was allowed to make the stop.
6′Driving run from Scott Parker is curtailed in the penalty area.
5′BUFFON DENIES ENGLAND! England’s first sustained spell of possession and James Milner’s square ball is poked towards goal by Glen Johnson of all people from seven yards but there is not enough purchase on the effort and Gianluigi Buffon claws away.
4′ITALY HIT THE POST! That would have been the goal of the tournament. The ball is pulled back from the right to Daniele De Rossi who hits across his effort from 30 yards and is so unlucky to see the ball hit the woodwork with Hart beaten.
3′Joleon Lescott’s clearance falls to Montolivo who feeds Federico Balzaretti but his cross from the left into the penalty area is too deep.
2′Joe Hart and John Terry almost get themselves in a muddle before the Chelsea captain clears his lines.
June 23, 2012 7:45 PM BST
Donbass Arena — Donets’k
Referee: N. Rizzoli
Spain: Sergio Ramos
France: Yohan Cabaye, Jérémy Menez
spain vs france match statistics euro 2012
90+4′FULL TIME. Spain win 2-0 thanks to two goals from Xabi Alonso on his 100th cap. France were very disappointing and it is Spain who go through to face Portugal in the semi-finals.90+3′Torres twists and turns in the box as he tries to add a third goal but Koscielny stands firm to block. He has had a good game for France tonight.90+1′GOAL! Spain 2-0 France! Xabi Alonso takes it and slots the ball to the left as Lloris dives to the right! Game over.90′Penalty to Spain! Cazorla plays in Pedro and after pulling out a stepover he is kicked to the ground by Reveillere!88′Nasri has a late corner and Rami heads back across goal, but Koscielny can’t keep the ball in play as he stretches at the back post.86′This game is meandering to a rather insipid conclusion I am afraid. This has probably been the worst game of the tournament so far and France have surrendered here. It’s been a terrible performance from them.84′Spain make a change as Santi Cazorla replaces Iniesta.82′France need to have more urgency here, the game is slipping away from them quickly.80′Torres gets on the end of a pass from Alba but is ruled offside as he sees his effort blocked by Lloris. That looked a very tight decision.79′Here is Giroud and he comes on for defensive midfielder M’Vila as France throw caution to the wind.78′Arsenal fans, we are now going to see Olivier Giroud, who is set to sign for the Gunners after this tournament.76′Menez is booked for dissent and that rules him out of the semi-final should France progress. What a silly boy.75′Spain have passed up the chance to kill France off and could now feel the pressure with just 15 minutes remaining. This game is far from finished.74′Spain have had 59 per cent possession so far tonight. It feels like more though.72′France threaten! Excellent work from Ribery as he races onto a fine pass from M’Vila, gets to the byline and pulls the ball back. Casillas throws out his left arm to prevent the ball from finding Menez and then quickly smothers as the midfielder looks to pick up any scraps.70′Now Alba chips a pass through for Pedro, who gets in behind Reveillere and only a slide from Koscielny prevents Torres from tapping in at the near post.69′Xavi takes a neat touch 35 yards from goal and spins before seeing a decent volley blocked by Koscielny in the France defence.68′So Spain now have a focal point to their attack, while France have more of an attacking outlook. This could result in a more eventful game.67′Xavi takes the corner and the ball bounces through to Ramos at the back post. Spain now make their second change as Torres comes on for Fabregas.66′Alba almost finds Fabregas with a fine low cross into the centre but Rami clears before the Barcelona man can get on the end of it.65′Spain counter with a change of their own as Pedro replaces Silva, who hasn’t been quite at his best tonight.65′A double change for France as Nasri and Menez come on for Malouda and Debuchy.64′Benzema slashes a shot well over the bar. That is a poor attempt by the striker.63′France are readying Nasri and Menez on the sidelines.62′Fabregas races onto a pass through the centre and almost takes the ball wide of Lloris. However, the keeper had raced off his line quickly and intervenes. Fine goalkeeping.61′Suddenly France look lively again as they pour into the Spain box but Del Bosque’s side shut the door and manage to clear.60′France go close! France actually have a chance! Ribery with the cross and Debuchy gets his head to the ball in the centre of the box, sending it just over the bar.59′Clichy suddenly injects pace down the left and plays a square pass for Ribery but the midfielder fails to get control of the ball as Ramos comes across to hoof it clear.59′Fabregas finds himself onside to the right of the box but his low cross for Iniesta is cleared by Reveillere. Again Spain fail to find a cutting edge in the box.57′Silva and Ribery battle enthusiastically for the ball and the referee judges that the Spain midfielder has fouled his France counterpart. France take it quickly but can’t carve out a chance.56′Stat from Opta: “France have beaten Spain at two European Championship finals (one draw) and have gone on to win the title on both occasions (1984 2-0 in the final, 2000 2-1 in the quarter-final).”55′It depends on what you want from your football match but I think there are some who will complain that Spain are a bit boring if the match continues in this vein. Many made exactly that complaint at the World Cup. Not that they will be concerned of course.54′France have been much improved in this second half – Blanc must have had a gentle word. They have looked more sprightly and have shown much more intent.53′Nice from France as the ball is worked to Benzema and he finds Ribery with a clever pass. However, Ramos senses danger and races across to stick his boot in. Excellent defending.52′Alonso suddenly sees space open up for him after poking the ball forward with his first touch but his lashed effort soars off target. Worth a go.50′Brilliant from Benzema. He juggles the ball near the touchline before turning to find space and play in Debuchy. However, the right back takes a heavy touch and then brings down his man to give away a free kick.49′Silva does well to cut out a France pass down the line but then cedes possession straight back with a rather indulgent flick that lands nowhere near a Spain shirt.48′Ribery plays a ball down the line for Malouda but Pique comes across to snuff out the danger.47′No changes from either side, but surely France will have to call on Samir Nasri, Hatem Ben Arfa or Jeremy Menez if they continue to struggle.46′KICK OFF!-Let me know what you made of that first half by getting in contact on Twitter. Follow Tom Adams on Twitter!45+1′HALF TIME. Alonso’s header has Spain in control against France, who have offered little going forward. A bit of a sterile game so far.45+1′We will have one added minute.45′Xavi curls in a free kick from the left wing but sends the ball flying into the grateful arms of Lloris in the France goal.44′A nice intricate passing move from Spain in the final third but Fabregas’s pass for Silva just has too much on it. Spain have dominated as you would expect, but they do lack a certain something in the final third with Fabregas in attack.42′Cabaye goes into the book when his trailing leg catches the standing leg of Sergio Busquets late. A messy challenge.41′Stat from Opta: “Iker Casillas already has six clean sheets at European Championship finals to his name (level with Italy’s Dino Zoff); only Edwin van der Sar (nine) has more.”39′This time Spain hit Pique from the set-piece but his header from 12 yards out soars over the bar. He found himself in too much space though.38′A lovely ball from Fabregas as he receives a pass from Iniesta and flicks the ball over the defence for his team-mate, whose shot is deflected out for a corner.37′France are gradually improving though they remain hasty when in possession and are yet to really trouble Casillas. Spain’s fluency has decreased a touch, though they have never looked anything but in total control.36′Alba is caught late by Benzema as he clears down the line and the two players have a little chat, forcing the referee to blow his whistle and calm them down.34′Ribery tries a clever square pass but can’t pick out Benzema inside the box. He throws up his arms in frustration. France need to make the most of the chances they manage to create tonight.33′Ribery delivers the corner and Casillas drops the ball 10 yards out, the keeper looking relieved when he is able to drop to the ground and smother the ball.32′Cabaye is given responsibility this time and he forces Casillas into a smart save with a curling effort that was destined for the top corner.31′Ramos goes into the book for blocking off Madrid team-mate Benzema after the Frenchman knocked the ball to the side of him. A free kick in a good position for France…30′Spain hit Fabregas from the corner – he is the big man up front after all – but under pressure he can’t steer his header on target.29′Spain break with intent and Fabregas loses his man with a nice touch before sliding in Iniesta. The midfielder shoots first time but his effort is deflected behind for a corner.28′Spain look very comfortable and if the game continues to pan out like this then I think Blanc will come under heavy fire for his decision to sit back and invite pressure.26′Alonso, who will miss the semi-finals with a booking tonight, clatters into Benzema to give away a free kick 35 yards from goal. The striker shoots and lifts the ball high over the bar.25′Stat from Opta: “Over their last 25 fixtures at Euros and World Cups, the only side able to score more than a single goal against Spain were France (3-1 in the 2006 World Cup).”24′Silva attempts to find a red shirt with a cut-back before France string together a nice passing move for once at the other end. Neither team manage to get a shot away though.22′The Spain fans mark each pass with “ole”. Confidence is flowing through the reigning champions now. France surrendered any initiative with their formation and now have a lot to do.21′There have now been 20 headed goals out of a total of 68 – a record ratio for the European Championship.20′Spain look for a quick second but Xavi gets under his volley and thumps the ball high into the stands. France are set up to contain Spain but now they have to come out.19′GOAL! Spain 1-0 France! Xabi Alonso heads home on his 100th appearance for his country! Iniesta plays in Alba and Debuchy slips, allowing the Valencia man to put in a deep cross to the back post where Alonso powers a header back across goal.18′Xavi pings a pass out for Arbeloa, who so often tonight has been the outlet for the Spain attack. Who can he target with a cross though? Spain’s army of midfielders are all tiny.16′To be honest this hasn’t exactly been a thriller. France’s set-up has seen to that.15′Yann M’Vila tries to inject some urgency into France’s build-up play with a cute pass forward for Karim Benzema, who is lurking to the left of the box. However, his pass is too strong for the striker to control.14′Silva shapes to dart into the box before playing the ball into the channel to find Arbeloa. He panics and pulls a shot across the box. That’s not who you want getting on the end of the ball in the box really, is it?13′Stat from Opta: “Spain have won just one of their nine previous European Championship or World Cup quarter-finals outright (v Paraguay in World Cup 2010) – four of those ended in penalty shootouts, with Spain winning just once this way (Euro 2008).”12′France really are standing off quite alarmingly. Spain are taking advantage by playing the ball around in front of the box and across the width of the pitch.11′Fabregas spreads the ball wide to Arbeloa and he whips in a cross that Lloris comes off his line to grab. France haven’t exactly been overwhelmed yet but it is Spain doing all the pressing.9′Lovely skills from Ribery as he drags the ball back and gets away from Alvaro Arbeloa. Spain recover though and hassle him out of possession.8′On his 100th cap, Alonso tries to score a trademark goal when attempting to float a shot over Lloris from 45 yards. However, the France captain is alert and catches the shot.7′There have only been two penalties at these finals and though Fabregas’s claim was a bit weak, some referees may have given it.6′Andres Iniesta tries to slip a pass through a crowd of players to Fabregas but sees Rami cut his attempt out. Alonso then picks out Fabregas, who goes to ground under contact from Gael Clichy in the box. There was contact and he wants a penalty, but it was a 50-50 incident.5′No patience from France as Lloris snatches at a clearance and punts the ball out of play. You won’t get very far against Spain if you give the ball away that easily.4′Franck Ribery and Florent Malouda combine well down the left but Spain, in typical fashion, soon crowd them out and win possession back. Xabi Alonso tries to pick out Cesc Fabregas over the top but gets too much on it.3′Jordi Alba looks to burst into space down the left but Adil Rami comes across to boot the ball out for a throw. Safety first: that is France’s raison d’être tonight.2′Spain are already knocking the ball about with a hypnotic rhythm. France are sitting very deep so far.1′KICK OFF!