Italy will face Spain in the Euro 2012 final as Mario Balotelli stole the headlines in Warsaw.
The 21-year-old centre forward headed the opener against Germany before lashing an unstoppable second beyond Manuel Neuer to book the Azzurri's place in Kiev on Sunday.
Cesare Prandelli's team neutralised the heavy favourites in Germany, conceding just an injury time penalty after repelling the talented German firepower for the full match.
Italy began the match shorn of right back Ignazio Abate through injury, while Jogi Loew chose to shuffle his forward pack again. Mario Gomez and Lucas Podolski returned to the team, replacing Miroslaw Klose and Marko Reus.
Germany had been first to threaten in the final. A low cross caused mayhem when Gianluigi Buffon spilled the ball and saw it ricochet for a corner after 12 minutes. Kroos then tested the goalkeeper with an effort from the set piece.
Italy pulled themselves back into the contest though, and Montolivo and Cassano posted their intentions in quick succession.
On 20 minutes they had the vital opening goal. Antonio Cassano weaved into a threatening position on the left flank and his cross picked out Balotelli with the header.
With Germany restricted to long-range efforts, they were soon picked off by a piece of opportunistic attack with just 36 minutes gone. A long ball forward found Balotelli completely unmarked and onside. As the Manchester City marksman advanced on goal he lashed a finish into the top corner from 20 yards.
Loew made his changes as half time, removing Podolski and Gomez for Reus and Klose, and Germany came forward in waves. Italy Giorgio Chiellini and Federico Balzaretti were in particularly miserly form at the back though, and chance after chance was snuffed out.
Italy came closest to extending the lead as they picked off the holes in the advancing German defence. First Marchisio, then Di Natale should have ended the contest.
A penalty two minutes into the allotted four of injury time gave Ozil a goal and Germany some hope, but it came too late and Italy advance to take on the defending champions.
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- Three lions tamed as Italy advance to the semi-finals of Euro 2012
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