Germany vs. Italy Video: Watch Mario Balotelli Give Italy Lead with Epic Header

Ben ChodosCorrespondent IIJune 28, 2012

Why always him? Mario Balotelli always finds a way to make headlines, but this time he went about it the way a world-class striker is supposed to and put in two first-half goals against Germany.

Despite constant hijinks both on and off the field, the Italian undoubtedly has the talent to produce spectacular goals, just as he did in the 20th minute of the semifinal match.

The Germans looked to be the aggressors early in the match and produced quality chances, but the game was quickly turned on its head.

Italy built an attack down the left side of the pitch that did not seem all that dangerous, but then the individual skill of the two Italian strikers overwhelmed the German center backs. 

Antonio Cassano received a pass and spun around Mats Hummels. Once he was free, he whipped a decisive left-footed cross into the box and Balotelli was too quick and explosive for Holger Badstuber. 

The Manchester City man was in the air and headed the ball into the net before Badstuber even had time to look up.

It did not take long for Balotelli to show why he has infuriated his coaches throughout his career. He immediately ripped off his shirt in celebration of his goal and received a yellow card. 

Germany was the favorite heading into the match and one of the favorites to win the tournament. 

The strike gave Italy the momentum in the match and Balotelli was brimming with confidence for the rest of the half. He went on to score once more to give the Azurri a two-goal lead.