Germany Beats Italy For The First Time In A Major Tournament

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Germany reached the Euro 2016 semi-finals after winning a thrilling penalty shootout against Italy in Bordeaux.

Joachim Low’s World Cup holders looked on course for a victory in normal time – against a country they had never beaten at a major tournament – when Mesut Ozil rounded off a slick build-up with Mario Gomez and Jonas Hector to score at the near post in the 65th minute.

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Italy did not flinch but were grateful for a moment of madness from Germany defender Jerome Boateng when he needlessly handled the ball, allowing Leonardo Bonucci to score the first penalty of his career with 12 minutes left.

Germany missed more penalties in one shootout than in their history – three – but were once again the winners on penalties.

They have still never lost a shootout since the 1976 final of this competition when they lost to Czechoslovakia – some 40 years and 13 days ago.

It was settled when Hector drove low under Italy keeper Gianluigi Buffon after Manchester United’s Matteo Darmian saw his side’s ninth penalty saved by Manuel Neuer.

Germany will now play either hosts France or England’s conquerors Iceland in the last four.

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