Italy lose high-profile friendly against Germany 4-1 in Munich

Italy showed a different face against Germany in comparison to Thursday’s encounter with Spain. Although it was only a friendly match, both teams took the game very seriously as one would expect from two European giants. It was the final match ahead of Conte’s squad nomination for this summer’s tournament, which will mark the end of his personal Azzurri career. The goals on the evening were scored by Kroos (24’), Götze (45’), Hector (59’), Özil (pen 75’) and El Shaarawy (83’).

The Azzurri deployed the same formation as against Spain, namely a 3-4-3 with Bonucci, Darmian and Acerbi ahead of Buffon in goal. Florenzi, Montolivo, Thiago Motta, Giaccherini made up the midfield from right to left, while Bernardeschi, Zaza and Insigne providing the attacking threat up front. “Respect, but no fear” was the message ahead of the game from Conte, and the Azzurri started the game brightly.

The Germany team did however make their mark first on the night, with Müller drilling a low cross across the box from the right hand side, which after an attempted interception from Bonucci, made its way to Kroos just outside the box. The Germany midfielder finished well to Buffon’s left, and Germany took the lead.

In the 30th minute, Germany threatened again but Draxler’s cross from the left found no one in the area. Italy responded at the other end, with Insigne’s shot from distance flying over the bar. The teams looked set to go in at half time with the scores at 1-0, but in the 45th minute, Germany struck again – Götze heading Müller’s cross into the back of the net.

The game did not change much at the start of the second half, with Germany applying the early pressure. After 59 minutes, they found the net once again with Draxler running down the left wing before picking out Hector who finished well past Buffon. Bonucci was injured in the move, slipping while trying to intercept a pass, and was forced off – Ranocchia his replacement. At the same time, De Silvestri replaced Florenzi.

Conte went on to make three more changes in hope of injecting fresh pace into Italy’s attack. Okaka, Parolo and El Shaarawy were given the nod to replace Insigne, Motta and Giaccherini. There was more bad news to come however. Buffon brought down Rudy in the box, and Özil stepped up to convert the penalty. In the 83rd minute, El Shaarawy scored what was a consolation goal for the Azzurri, and the game ended 4-1.