Sunday June 24 2012
Bonucci: 'England hurt Rooney'

Leonardo Bonucci believes England’s negative approach contributed to keeping Wayne Rooney quiet.

“In terms of what was seen on the pitch, Italy certainly deserved to qualify, as we played more, created more and were more of a team,” he said of the quarter-final win on penalties.

“The penalties can be a lottery, but Gigi Buffon and the takers did well to keep their cool.

“Andrea Pirlo put a bit of pressure on with that scooped spot-kick, but we got through! If the penalties had gone to sudden death, I would’ve been the next up.”

England only had one real scoring opportunity in the opening minutes and defended for most of the 120.

“Rooney was kept quiet by us, but also by England’s tactics, as he had to run back a lot and that tired him out,” argued Bonucci.

“Germany in the Euros and in qualifying have been great, but we have to focus on recharging our batteries and preparing for the semi-final. Now we are here, we want to take our chances.

“All the players we face are top at this level and so we face Mario Gomez with the same approach as we did Rooney, Welbeck or Carroll.”

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