Two down, two to go. Saturday night sees a potential match of the year, tournament and possibly decade. Or you know, it could just be a dreadful game with no chances and we go to penalties again. Because who wouldn’t love to see a penalty shootout between the kings of penalties and the kings of pizza.
But we don’t think it’ll get that far. Here are the two men we think have the best chance of scoring in 90 minutes.
Mario Gomez (cha cha) at
Every single person who had Thomas Muller to be top scorer at Euro 2016 is cursing him a lot right now. Despite having more shots than any of his German team mates, the Bayern star still can’t bring his World Cup form across to the Euros. In fact there’s only one German striker who’s actually got onto the scoresheet and he is…
Yes, Mario Gomez has netted twice for Jogi Low, including the winner against Northern Ireland in the last group game. A shot accuracy of just over 70% will have to be repeated against a strong Italian defence – a defence Gomez will know a fair bit about having spent two years at Fiorentina. When you give him the right service, Gomez can make magic. It’s only a matter of time before we push the button again.
We’ve tipped him a couple of times already and he’s delivered for us and Italy. The Italians have been pretty clinical and composed in their march into the quarter finals of Euro 2016. Now they face what will be their biggest test as they take on Germany – a side they have a brilliant record against in major tournaments (see Tardelli and mad Mario Balotelli for references).
Eder has been pretty quiet apart from his goal in the group stages but when he’s got a chance inside the box he’s hit the target more often that not (around once every three attempts over the last 12 games). Graziano Pelle is sure to be targeted by the robust rearguard of Jogi Low but if Italy are able to deal with a Spanish counter attack, they will have a decent chance against a German blitzkrieg.
They themselves have been ruthless when breaking – just ask Belgium. So look to Eder to finish a move off and net at to put his name alongside Super Mario and Luigi, the Dolmio man and the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in stereotypical Italian folklore.