Germany 2006 Day 22

Well, the hosts are out. Tense game, very tense indeed. It looked like it was all about to go Germany's way. Extra time was slipping away and it was still scoreless, so a penalty shootout was looming. Germany, it should be noted, haven't lost a penalty shootout since 1468 or something like that.

But it was not to be. Grosso hit one home (and German number 22, whatever your name is, you should have been on the line backing up the goalie, shouldn't you?). Germany went all out. They had scant minutes to hit an equaliser. Unfortunately, such a desperate rush leaves the goal lightly defended and, astoundingly, Del Piero made a fantastic run up the field and slotted one home with almost pinpoint accuracy.

The mighty Germans went down to the floor, completely stunned, beaten on their home turf in a game they should have really had in the bag.

Full kudos to both sides. A beautiful example of football at its finest. No red cards and only three yellows.

Some humour was engendered from the American commentator's pronunciation of Michael Ballack's surname. See, just like "mall" (in England - "maul", in USA - "maal"), this announcer was lengthening the "a" into something that sounded eerily like an "o". So this commentator kept announcing that Bollock had the ball. Quick pass by Bollock. Great shot by Bollock! Bollock on target that time!

Anyway, deserving win to Italy. Tomorrow brings Portugal vs France. And, loathe as I am to admit it, France has the edge. Portugal couldn't put the game away against a 10-man England squad. What chance have they against the team that slew the Brazilian dragon?

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