Kyiv: In the end the better side won. Though Italy won on penalties (4-2), the 120 minutes prior to the shoot-outs, the Azzurri had the Three Lions on the mat for most part of the game. With 68 % ball possession and 833 passes competed as opposed to England’s 364, the Italian domination was on display as England just fell a bit short in comparison to Italy’s superior ball play and attack.
Ashley Young and Ashley Cole missed the target in the shoot-out as Montolivo shot wide off the bar. Buffon made the Ashley Cole save and Diamanti put the ball in a final time to book the EURO 2012 semifinal spot and a clash with the Germans.
Italy: 0 X 0 0 0
Diamanti SCORES and
Italy advance to the last four
Pirlo to take the third, a brave floater, SCORES.
Montolivo MISSES just wide.
Baletolli takes the first one, bottom left corner SCORES
England: 0 0 X X
Ashley Cole MISSES, Buffon with the save.
Ashley Young MISSES, top woodwork.
Rooney takes second, thunderous one, top left. SCORES Eng 2-1 up.
Gerrard bottom left corner, SCORES.
The game is up to Buffon and Hart.
After 120 minutes of play it is 0-0 and that means, a 12- yard shoot to decide who will face Germany in the Euro 2012 semifinal.
AND IT WILL BE THE
FINAL SCORE: England 0 : 0 Italy
120 min: Free kick for Italy, Gerrard takes down Diamanti, that is a short one.
119 min: long ball from Pirlo, Maggio passes it to Nocerino and finally, Montolivo tries weak shot that is just wide.
118 min: Corner for Italy, Diamanti takes it, too long. Goal kick for England.
116 min: Nocerino puts the ball in courtesy a Diamanti cross but he is flagged OFFSIDE
114 min: Maggio curls one it, and Baletolli is caught napping.
113 min: Chance for Italy, Diamanti shoots wide, again.
113 min: Maggio’s shot is blocked by Cole.
111 min: Foul by Carroll, free kick, Baletolli takes it, after Pirlo leaves it, too high, futile effort
109 min: Free kick for Italy in a handy position, as Young penalizes Diamanti on right flank. Diamanti takes it, not cleared well, but England manage to strangle the Italian play.
108 min: Diamanti floats in the long ball just too long.
106 min: Second half of ET underway.
Extra time 1st half: England 0- 0 Italy
105 + 1 min: Walcott puts a dangerous ball in, Carroll tries to head it in from an improbable angle. And the ref blows the whistle, First period of play of Extra time comes to an end.
105 min: Italy enjoying majority of the possession. 1 minute added time.
102 min: Balotelli (Italy) is penalised for a foul on Terry (England).
101 min: Diamanti’s pass hits the woodwork. Heart stopping moment for England.
100 min: Baletolli shoots again, in between Lescott and Terry, simple pick up for Hart.
97 min: Italy have an attempt on goal.Balotelli (Italy) has an attempt on goal.Lescott (England) blocks a shot.
94 min: SUBSTITUTION Henderson (in) - Parker (out) (England).
93 min: Shot on goal by Nocerino, well over the bar. And it seems Jordan Henderson, the controversial pick for Eng squad is probably coming in place for Scott Parker.
92 min: Parker anticipates well to block Baletolli and take the ball away.
91 min: And it is extra time now, 30 minutes of play and England start off the proceedings.
SECOND HALF Eng 0- 0 Italy
So the game goes into 'Extra Time'. First one of Euro 2012. as after regulation time the socreline is 0-0.
90 + 3 min: Good build up by England ,as rooney fires it over the bar after Carroll had headed the ball in.
90 + 2 min: Pirlo (Italy) has an attempt on goal.
90 + 1 min: SUBSTITUTION Maggio (in) - Abate (out) (Italy).
90 min: 3 mins. of added time.
89 min: super defending by Glen Johnson, as Nocerino’s shot is blocked.
87 min: Carroll’s shot is well blocked by Pirlo (Italy) blocks a shot.
86 min: Balotelli (Italy) is penalised for handball.
83 min: YELLOW CARD for Barzagli, Free kick for England, Gerrard takes it, cleared away, but ref stops play as Balzaretti goes down and stays down.
81 min: shot on goal by Diamanti, Hart dives to his left and takes the ball.
80 min: SUBSTITUTION Nocerino (in) - De Rossi (out) (Italy).
79 min: corner for Italy, Diamanti takes it, Hart punches it away.
79 min: SUBSTITUTION Diamanti (in) - Cassano (out) (Italy).
76 min: free kick for England, Gerrrard takes it, garb by Buffon as the ball went all the way through.
75 min: Montolivo’s shot blocked by a string of white shirts.
72 min: Gerrard on the ground, probably a cramp.
71 min: Rooney, Walcott combining well, but Parker’s through pass is long, Goal kick for Italy.
68 min: Carroll (England) concedes a free-kick for a foul on Pirlo (Italy).
66 min: Marchisio’s shot is well blocked by Terry.
64 min: Ashley Young’s shot is deflected off. Walcott’s cross was missed by Carroll. Corner, Gerrrard takes it, foul by Carroll.
62 min: Cassano flagged for offside.
61 min: SUBSTITUTION Carroll (in) - Welbeck (out) (England) and Walcott (in) - Milner (out) (England).
60 min: Abeta crosses one in, Baletolli, tries a bicycle kick, just over.
57 min: Abeta collides with Ashley Young, both men down on the ground.
55 min: Pirlo’s pass intercepted by Cole.Away for corner
52 min: Baletolli drives it along the foot of Hart, and then Montolivo dashes forward and misses , how on earth did he miss that, over the top. Italy ruining unbelievable chances here at Kyiv. Joe Hart's save bounces upwards and the midfielder is first to the ball three metres from goal but his effort is just over as Glen Johnson puts him under pressure
51 min: Parker (England) concedes a free-kick for a foul on Pirlo (Italy).
49 min: Good paly by Rooney, wins a corner, Gerrard with the delivery, Barzagli heads it away.
47 min: Corner awarded to Italy. Pirlo delivers, Hart punches away, Big chance for De Rossi as he misfires loopy ball in front of the goal.
46 min: Second half underway.
FIRST HALF Eng 0- 0 Italy
What a fantastic first-half that was, De Rossi started with a bang, hitting the top left woodwork with scorching shot from 40 yards out in the 3rd minute, Glen Johnson immediately had a terrific chance as Buffon produced a top class save. Rooney diving header went just over the bar as Baletolli again had a brain freeze going one-on-one with Joe Hart.
The tempo of the game was unbelievable as both teams against all expectations played at a frenzy pace creating opportunities to squander them. The ultra defensive Italy was nowhere to be seen as England played freely and attacked fluidly.
45 min: No added minute as the first half ends with score at 0-0.
44 min: Johnson (England) is penalised for a foul on Balotelli (Italy).
43 min: Free kick for Italy in useful situation, but it is a counter by England, fizzles out. Baletolli has a shot on goal now, just over.
42 min: Boots flying in everywhere as england concede a corner. Pirlo (Italy) delivers the corner.
39 min: Parker (England) concedes a free-kick for a foul on De Rossi (Italy). Pirlo (Italy) takes the free-kick.
37 min: Good tackle by De Rossi, as he stops Rooney to break away.
33 min: Great tempo to the game even now, as Cassano’s weak effort from the edge of the box goes for a goal kick for England.
32 min: Rooney backheels a lay-off for Danny Welbeck, but his shot goes over the bar from the edge of the box.
31 min: Chance for Baletolli once again, squanders again, weak side bicycle kick from the Man City striker, easily taken by Hart.
32 min: Montolivo (Italy) misses the target.
27 min: After a spell of England pressure, it is now Italy who have the advantage, as they move the ball about at will, but still as yet have failed to really trouble Hart in the English goal.
25 min: MARIO FOR ITALY, and he fails to shoot again ,superb pass by Pirlo, Mario was one on one, but as he did again Spain, took a bit too much time to go for goal, is crowded.John Terry to the rescue, as Balotelli beat the English offside trap, Terry dived in to make sure that the Italian striker didn't have a one-on-one with his keeper.
23 min: Halfway through the first half and Italy are dominating the possession, currently with just over 62% of the ball, but they have failed to translate that into goals.
20 min: First corner for Italy, Pirlo (Italy) delivers the corner. England have been on top of Pirlo's deliveries so far - John Terry and striker Danny Welbeck dominating in the air to keep things safe at the back.
18 min: Good Italian move, but Cassano fails to reach the popped up ball, send in by Pirlo. Hart takes it right on time.
17 min: Lescott (England) concedes a free-kick for a foul on Balotelli (Italy). Pirlo takes it from right, long delivery, Balzaretti tires to put the ball in, long again. Free-kick for England, Hart takes it.
14 min: Rooney with a diving header shoots wide. Wayne Rooney meets another dangerous Glen Johnson centre with a diving header just metres out, but his connection is too heavy and the ball flies over.
12 min: Parker goes for goal after Buffon had punched the ball but misses the target. Glen Johnson had earlier showed good trickery to pass the ball from right but just a tad long for Rooney.
11 min: Corner for England, first one Gerrard (England) takes the corner. Cleared. Rooney then comes from the left and his low, front post cross looking for Danny Welbeck is cut out for an England corner. Leonardo Bonucci heads the delivery clear. It is a break away by Italy now, Cassano moving forward with the ball, but it is a poor through ball to Baletolli.
10 min: England on the attack as Gerard crosses the ball in, well defended by Balzaretti.
7 min: Welbeck (England) is penalised for a foul on Pirlo (Italy).Marchisio (Italy) takes the free-kick.
4 min: Fantastic Chance for England , Buffon to the rescue as Glen Johnson fails to get the goal right in front of it. A top-class save from Gianluigi Buffon, he pounced on to the ball the second time after he had put his hand up when Johnson tried to chip the ball in.
3 min: De Rossi hits the woodwork. WHAT AN EFFORT from Rossi, hit the ball on the volley, ball swirls as Hart is beaten, but Italy denied by the woodwork.
2 min: Shooting opportunity for Balzaretti, his cross is just too wide as Italy dominate the proceedings in the first 2 mins. Of the game.
1 min: So we are under way here at the Olympic stadium with Italy starting off the proceedings. Italy in all blue and England in all whites.
The Azzurri go with their tried and trusted 4-3-1-2 as England are going with 4-4-2.
Italy: Buffon, Balzaretti, Abate, Barzagli, Bonucci, Marchisio, De Rossi, Montolivo, Pirlo, Balotelli, Cassano,
BENCH: Sirigu, De Sanctis, Maggio, Chiellini, Ogbonna, Motta, Giaccherini, Diamanti, Nocerino, Di Natale, Borini, Giovinco.
England: Hart, Johnson, Cole, Terry, Lescott, Gerrard, Young, Milner, Parker, Rooney, Welbeck
BENCH: Green, Butland, Kelly, Baines, Jones, Jagielka, Walcott, Henderson, Downing, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Carroll, Defoe.
The fans seem to be all set to support their teams:
Welcome to the live coverage of the 4th and the final quarterfinal of the Euro 2012 between the mercurial England side and the ultra defensive Italian outfit.
• In case you missed last night’s second quarter-final match, read: Spain vs France - As it happened»
• Also check out our Gallery on Fans@Euro »
For Italy - Christian Maggio, Mario Balotelli, Leonardo Bonucci, Thiago Motta, Riccardo Montolivo, Gianluigi Buffon, Federico Balzaretti and Daniele De Rossi are all on one Yellow card.
For England - Ashley Young, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, James Milner, Ashley Cole and Steven Gerrard are all a yellow card away from a suspension.
This would be the battle of strategies in Kyiv with the teams meeting each other for the first time since a 2-1 Italy win in Leeds in March 2002.
England are coming into the match with two wins to their name whereas the Italians just managed a win over Republic of Ireland after playing out two draws against Spain and Croatia.
Both the managers have made it clear that they would be going all out. Hodgson in a press conference said, “We need to take the game by the scruff of the neck because if Italy have the chance to control it, it could be a very long night for us”.
Cesare Prandelli, accepting his rivals unpredictable nature sounded rather confident ahead of the game stating, “They`re going to produce a high tempo and put their foot in a lot, so if we can set the tempo then we can do well”.
• Despite their rich footballing histories, England and Italy will meet for only the second time at a UEFA European Championship final tournament in Kyiv on Sunday. The winners will face Germany in the semis.
• The Azzurri, who will be without Giorgio Chiellini because of a thigh injury
• Finalists eight times, England have never won their opening game at a UEFA European Championship, though this time they recovered to top their group for only the second time after 1996.
• Coach Cesare Prandelli is unbeaten in competitive internationals, recording nine wins and four draws to date.
England are on a high after two consecutive wins to emerge top of Group D and Wayne Rooney will lead the line again after he returned to score the only goal in the triumph over Ukraine, despite not looking particularly impressive.
Meanwhile, winger Ashley Young is winning his race for fitness after taking a knock to the shin in that match, so coach Roy Hodgson is likely to stick with the same starting XI that featured in Donetsk, although Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain will be hoping to pip James Milner to a place on the right wing.
At the back, defender Glen Johnson is being treated with antibiotics for a toe infection, but that should not keep him out the last four clash on Sunday.
On the other side, Italy coach Cesare Prandelli is likely to stick with the 4-3-1-2 formation he utilised during the victory over Ireland rather than the 3-5-2 seen in the draws with Spain and Croatia.
However, he will definitely have to leave out centre-back Giorgio Chiellini, who is suffering with a thigh problem he aggravated in the 2-0 win over Republic of Ireland and is now likely to miss the remainder of the tournament, should the Azzurri advance.
Thiago Motta is a slight doubt after suffering from muscle fatigue and skipping a recent training session, and could be replaced by Alessandro Diamanti or Riccardo Montolivo in the role of No.10 if not passed fit.
Up front, Mario Balotelli will come up against some of his Manchester City team-mates, as he is reinstated in the starting XI at the expense of Antonio Di Natale to partner Antonio Cassano, after scoring a spectacular volley in their previous match.
No players are suspended for this match, but Ashley Cole, Steven Gerrard, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, and Young (all England) as well as Balotelli, Federico Balzaretti, Leonardo Bonucci, Daniele De Rossi, Christian Maggio, Montolivo, Thiago Motta and Gianluigi Buffon (all Italy) are one booking away from a semi-final suspension should their team progress.