Matteo Darmian became the latest Manchester United player to have his Euro 2016 stay brought to an end yesterday as he was part of the Italy side that lost on penalties to Germany.
Fellow Red Bastian Schweinsteiger was involved on the other side for Germany, though, ensuring there will be at least one United representative in the semi-finals.
Schweinsteiger gets prolonged cameo
Neither Darmian nor Schweinsteiger were involved from the start, as has often been the case in the tournament, although the German midfielder was given much longer on the field than he might have expected.
After being restricted to second half substitute appearances in all of his previous matches at the tournament, Schweinsteiger came on in just the 16th minute after Sami Khedira was forced off injured.
Schweinsteiger failed to change the course of a first half which saw few chances, with his only contribution of note being a disallowed headed goal after he had clearly fouled an Italian defender.
United pair both miss from the spot
Germany had opened the scoring in the 65th minute through Mesut Ozil and conceded an equaliser to Leonardo Bonnuci’s penalty just over ten minutes later before Darmian came on as a substitute with only minutes of normal time remaining.
However, he would play a significant role in deciding the game later on, as extra time ended without any additional goals despite both teams having chances to score a winner.
Both teams scored their first penalties and missed their second, before a number of misses from Premier League players followed. Arsenal’s Ozil missed Germany’s third, allowing Italy to take the lead before Graziano Pelle of Southampton also miscued his effort and gave Germany a route back into the contest.
Julian Draxler levelled the score again but neither side could take the initiative thereafter. Schweinsteiger had the opportunity to win it for Germany with his nation’s fifth penalty but sent his shot over.
Six successful penalties followed and it looked like the next miss would be decisive. Unfortunately, that proved to be true for Darmian, who did at least hit the target but his low effort was easily saved by Manuel Neuer.
Germany’s Jonas Hector then scored to win the shootout for Germany, who will now face either France or Iceland in Thursday’s semi-final.