Euro 2016 Day 19: Italy aim to topple world champions Germany

Former European champions Germany and Italy clash but only one of these heavyweights will book themselves a place in the Euro 2016 semi-finals.

Germany v Italy
2000 ~ Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux

World champions Germany head into their quarter-final unbeaten and no goals conceded but face a tough Italy side, who will be hoping to end the Germans quest for a World and European double.

Julian Draxler scores Germany's third in an comfortable win over Slovakia image: bbc.com

Julian Draxler scores Germany’s third in a comfortable win over Slovakia
image: bbc.com

Germany thrashed Slovakia 3-0 in the last 16 as they put in a much improved performance from their group games and will have to be at their very best to break down this Italy side.

Italy come into this game on the back of dumping out champions Spain 2-0 on Monday and have impressed at Euro 2016 with some strong defensive displays, with just one goal conceded in four games.

Germany gaffer Joachim Low believes his team are ready for a very tough game against Italy and believes that if they pick up their first veer tournament win over Italy they can go all the way.

“We’re confident because we’re aware of our strengths,” said the 56-year-old.

“We have analysed Italy and seen their other games – they don’t just have defensive qualities but also good attacking solutions. Of course they know how to defend and we’ve prepared for that and analysed a few other things. I think we’re well prepared.”

“The winner could of course become champions. All the sides that make it this far have that goal; both Germany and Italy have that quality. There’s still a long way to go, but of course the winners tomorrow may then be favourites for the title.”

Italy manager Antonio Conte is confident that Italy can continue their impressive form at Euro 2016 and that a win over the world champions will only boost their confidence to win a second European Championship.

“I think Germany are the most complete side in the world at the moment,” said the former Juventus boss.

“It’s going to be a very different game to the Spain one. We’ve tried to identify areas where we can hurt Germany. We have a great deal of respect for them, but we’ll try to play our hand and play to our strengths.

” If I were to go back in time a month ago it wouldn’t have been a contest because of the respective sides, but now we’re here after beating Spain. We’ll need to perform well to overturn the odds, but we’ve worked hard. If we do win tomorrow, it will be extremely well earned.”

Graziano Pelle celebrates as Italy beat holders Spain 2-0 image: skysports.com

Graziano Pelle celebrates as Italy beat holders Spain 2-0
image: skysports.com

Team News

Trio Jerome Boateng, Julian Draxler and Sami Khedira have all overcome minor injuries meaning Germany have a full strength squad to choose from. Boateng, Khedira, Mats Hummels, Joshua Kimmich and Mesut Ozil come into the game one yellow away from a ban.

Italy are sweating on the fitness of midfielder Daniele De Rossi, who went off in the win over Spain with a thigh injury, while fellow midfielder Thiago Motta is suspended. Winger Antonio Candreva is once again ruled out..

11 Italy players – Andrea Barzagli, Leonardo Bonucci, Gianluigi Buffon, Giorgio Chiellini, Daniele De Rossi, Mattia De Sciglio, Eder, Lorenzo Insigne, Graziano Pelle, Salvatore Sirigu and Simone Zaza – are all on a yellow card and could miss a potential semi-final.

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