Mesut Ozil is confident that Germany have not only grown since their last tournament defeat to Italy, but that they will have no trouble beating the Azzurri this week.
The Germans face Cesare Prandelli’s side in the European Championship semi-finals this Thursday, in the two teams’ first competitive encounter since the 2006 World Cup semi-final, where the Azzurri defeated Jurgen Klinsmann’s team after extra time.
However, in being asked whether he and his teammates fear a repeat episode against the Nazionale this coming week, Ozil asserted to a new level of confidence flowing through the German camp.
“We are here to win the European title. I am convinced that we will succeed,” the Real Madrid man declared to the assembled Press today.
“The past does not concern us. The difference from 2006 is that we have become very consistent and can now beat strong opponents. In addition, we have developed since 2010 and again have become a lot better.
“Italy will also sense this. Other national teams have great respect for us. Our goal is to bring home to Germany the European title. We are here only for this. We can beat Italy and we can win the title.
“Andrea Pirlo is a world class player, Mario Balotelli is a great striker. But we do not think about individual adversaries - Italy are a very compact team but we can beat them.”