Germany became the second team to book their place in the semi-finals of the ongoing EURO 2012 after hammering a hapless Greece 4-2 to progress through to the last four to take on the winner of the game between England and Italy. The match between Greece and the former three-time European as well as World Champions Germany was always considered as somewhat of a mismatch, but no one expected The Hellas to surrender as meekly to the Germans as they did. Even before the kick off, there was talk in the Greek media about this match being one of revenge for the role of the Germans for the turmoil that the country has been going through for the past several months and the German media found innovative ways to lampoon the Greeks as well.
But as soon as the first ball was kicked in the match, it was only about the Germans bombarding the Greek defense with wave after wave of attacks and the Greeks trying to stand tall. It was almost a given that Joachim Loew and his side would canter to a win by the way they started the match, but were left frustrated by a resolute Greek defense who tried their best to keep the Germans out. The biggest surprise at the start of the match was perhaps the inclusion of Marco Reus, Miroslav Klose and Andre Schurrle to the German team in place of the in-form striker Mario Gomez, Lukas Podolski and Thomas Muller.
But little did anyone know that this new and fresh German team would rip apart the Greeks with ease as well. However, for all the possession they had of the ball, the Germans were more or less limited to shooting from distance thanks to the Greek defenders parking the proverbial bus in front of goal. Although the goalkeeper Sifakis did little to assure the defenders in front of him, it still took a long range effort on 40 minutes from German skipper Philip Lahm to open the scoring and the two teams walked off the pitch after the first 45 minutes with the Germans leading by a goal to nil.
The second half saw the Germans being almost too casual with possession and was punished when off a fast paced counter attack, Salpingidis found his striker partner Samaras in front the goal and he slotted the ball home past a hapless Manuel Neuer.
The German hearts would have been in the mouths at that time, but it took them only six minutes to reclaim the lead with a stunning volley from Sami Khedira. They proceeded to score two more goals through Miroslav Klose and Marco Reus in the next minutes to take a 4-1 lead before the Greeks were awarded a penalty in the dying minutes when the ball hit the hand of Jerome Boateng and Salpingidis made no mistake in scoring from the spot.
But that was too little too late for the Greeks and the Germans ran out as comfortable winners in the end.