Germany v Portugal, 19 June 2008

Score3-2 to Germany
RefereePeter Frojdfeldt
CompetitionUEFA European Championship Finals quarter-final
VenueSt Jakob Park, Basel
Attendance39,374
Kick-Off: 8.45pm local Assistant referees: Stefan Wittberg (Sweden) Henrik Andrén (Sweden) Fourth official: Kyros Vassaras (Greece) Man of the Match: Bastian Schweinsteiger (Germany) Germany progressed to the semi-finals of the UEFA European Championship for the first time since 1996 as goals from Bastian Schweinsteiger, Miroslav Klose and Michael Ballack secured a 3-2 victory over Portugal in Basel. The Mannschaft ended up lifting the Henri Delaunay Cup that year and the way they raised their game to meet the challenge of a Portugal side that refused to lie down – halving a two-goal deficit twice through first Nuno Gomes and then, in the dying minutes, Hélder Postiga – augurs well for Joachim Löw's team. By contrast, it was a night when the worst fears of Portugal's Chelsea FC-bound coach Luiz Felipe Scolari were realised, his pre-match nightmares about Germany's aerial superiority materialising in the form of headed goals by Klose and Ballack. Portugal were semi-finalists in 2000 and runners-up in 2004 and Scolari had hoped to take that final step at UEFA EURO 2008 but his farewell party fell flat at St. Jakob-Park, where Portugal were overpowered by opponents who shrugged aside impressively their occasional first-stage torpor. With Simão probing down the right, Scolari's men appeared to be finding their stride as they offered the first threat on goal when Bosingwa crossed and João Moutinho, free of his marker but seemingly caught in two minds, steered the ball over at the near post with his knee. Yet in the 22nd minute they fell behind. It was a wonderfully worked goal too, swift passing between Philipp Lahm, Ballack and Lukas Podolski advancing the ball down the left, with Podolski bursting clear to drive in a low cross which Schweinsteiger converted with a sliding finish. Schweinsteiger's coach Löw had told the midfielder he had a "debt" to his team-mates after his red card against Croatia and here, in his first start of the finals, he resembled a man on a mission. Scorer of two goals against Portugal at the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Schweinsteiger was the architect of their second here too, drifting a free-kick into the Portugal box which Klose, ghosting clear of the red shirts, headed past Ricardo. Raul Meireles replaced the injured Moutinho and Portugal went in search of a lifeline. It came via captain Nuno Gomes five minutes before the break. Simão's crossfield ball sent Ronaldo racing clear of Per Mertesacker down the inside-left channel and though Jens Lehmann blocked his shot, Gomes was first to the rebound, striking first time into the net via the foot of Christoph Metzelder, defending desperately on the line. It was Gomes's sixth goal on the European stage over three tournaments – a scoring span only achieved by Jürgen Klinsmann, Thierry Henry and Vladimír Šmicer before him. Ronaldo was a whisker away from an equaliser moments before half-time, flashing the ball past Lehmann yet just wide of the far post. Deco did find the net shortly after the interval but was in an offside position and the little midfielder then flicked on a Simão corner to set up Pepe, only for the defender to nod over. Ballack showed him how it should be done in the 61st minute when – to the displeasure of his future manager – he shrugged off Chelsea FC team-mate Paulo Ferreira and beat Ricardo to another Schweinsteiger free-kick to head home. Scolari sent on Nani and Postiga as Portugal chased the game and the pair combined to ensure a nervy finale when Postiga headed in from Nani's left-wing delivery but the glimmer of hope was soon extinguished.

3  Germany

Manager: Joachim Low

2  Portugal

Manager: Luiz Felipe Scolari

Goals:

Bastian Schweinsteiger 22 G
Miroslav Klose 26 G
Michael Ballack 62 G

Goals:

Nuno Gomes 41 G
Hélder Postiga 87 G

Starting lineup:

Goalkeeper Jens Lehmann
Defender Arne Friedrich
Defender Philipp Lahm
Defender Per Mertesacker
Midfielder Michael Ballack (captain)
Midfielder Thomas Hitzlsperger
Midfielder Simon Rolfes
Forward Miroslav Klose
Forward Lukas Podolski

Starting lineup:

Goalkeeper Ricardo
Defender Ricardo Carvalho
Defender Paulo Ferreira
Defender Pepe
Defender/Midfielder Jose Bosingwa
Midfielder Deco
Midfielder João Moutinho
Midfielder Petit
Midfielder Simão
Midfielder/Forward Cristiano Ronaldo
Forward Nuno Gomes (captain)

Substitutions:

Tim Borowski for Thomas Hitzlsperger 73
Clemens Fritz for Bastian Schweinsteiger 83
Marcell Jansen for Miroslav Klose 89

Substitutions:

Raul Meireles for João Moutinho 31
Nani for Nuno Gomes 67
Hélder Postiga for Petit 73

Cards:

Arne Friedrich 48 Y
Philipp Lahm 49 Y

Cards:

Petit 26 Y
Pepe 60 Y
Hélder Postiga 90 Y

On the bench:

Goalkeeper Rene Adler
Goalkeeper Robert Enke
Defender Heiko Westermann
Defender/Midfielder Marcell Jansen
Midfielder Tim Borowski
Midfielder Torsten Frings
Midfielder Clemens Fritz
Midfielder Piotr Trochowski
Forward Mario Gómez
Forward Kevin Kurányi
Forward Oliver Neuville
Forward David Odonkor

On the bench:

Goalkeeper Nuno
Goalkeeper Rui Patrício
Defender Bruno Alves
Defender Fernando Meira
Defender Jorge Ribeiro
Defender/Midfielder Miguel
Defender/Midfielder Miguel Veloso
Midfielder Nani
Midfielder Raul Meireles
Midfielder/Forward Ricardo Quaresma
Forward Hugo Almeida

Comments:

- Germany have reached the semi-final of the European Championship for the first time since 1996, which was also the last occasion they lifted the trophy. -Germany have now scored at total of 52 goals in European Championship finals. Only the Netherlands have scored more (54).

Comments:

- Portugal have not reached the last four for the first time since 1996. In 2000, they lost in the semi-finals to France, and in 2004, Greece beat them in the final. - Nuno Gomes' goal makes him the fourth player to score in three different European Championships, equalling Thierry Henry, Jurgen Klinsmann and Vladimir Smicer. - The Portuguese forward has now scored six European Championship goals. Only Alan Shearer (seven) and Michel Platini (nine) have netted more. Gomes also equalled Luis Figo (14) as Portugal's record appearance maker at European Championships.