Germany progressed to the semi-finals of the 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.
PORTUGAL 2-3 GERMANY
St. Jakob-Park, Basel
Germany booked their place in the semi-finals of Euro 2008 by seeing off a below-par Portugal side in Basel. Bastian Schweinsteiger sidefooted in the first and his free-kick created the second for the head of Miroslav Klose. Nuno Gomes finished from close range to give Portugal hope, but they failed to defend another Schweinsteiger free-kick and Michael Ballack headed their third. Portugal substitute Helder Postiga pulled one back in the dying stages but there was to be no grandstand finish. Portugal had looked so impressive in qualifying for the knockout stages but Luiz Felipe Scolari's reign ended in disappointing fashion.
Scolari, who takes over as Chelsea boss next month, had suggested their lack of height might be exposed by a physically superior German side. But it was a failure to defend set-pieces that proved their downfall.
In contrast, Germany gave an accomplished display despite suspended coach Joachim Low having to watch the game from the stands. They will now face the winners of the Croatia-Turkey quarter-final in the last four and will be strong favourites to progress to the final on this showing.
Portugal: Ricardo, Bosingwa, Pepe, Carvalho, Ferreira, Petit (Postiga 73), Joao Moutinho (Raul Meireles 31), Ronaldo, Deco, Simao, Nuno Gomes (Nani 67).
Germany: Lehmann, Friedrich, Mertesacker, Metzelder, Lahm, Schweinsteiger (Fritz 83), Rolfes, Ballack, Hitzlsperger (Borowski 73), Klose (Jansen 89), Podolski.
[Euro 2008 QFs]