‘The boys were extraordinary’: Mancini hails Italy

‘It really could have gone either way, but Italy deserved to win here.’

Roberto Mancini was overjoyed with his Italy team after they withstood a late onslaught from top-ranked Belgium to win 2-1 and set up a Euro 2020 semi-final clash with Spain.

“We deserved to win. The boys were extraordinary in the game,” he said after Friday’s quarter-final triumph in Munich.

“We only suffered in the last 10 minutes because we were really tired, we had spent a lot. But we could have scored a few more goals.”

Mancini said his players deserved to savour the triumph before thinking about Tuesday’s game against three-times European champions Spain at London’s Wembley Stadium.

“We didn’t have a minimum goal, we wanted to do our best, the road is still long, there are two games to go, we’ll see what happens,” he said.

“Spain? Let’s enjoy this victory, then we’ll think about it. Congratulations to my boys, they were very good.”

Belgium goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois was disappointed but gave credit to the Italians.

“This hits hard, but we knew it was going to be a tough game. We had two opportunities but their keeper made a good save and I think we gave the first goal away a bit too easily,” he said.

“It really could have gone either way, but Italy deserved to win here.”

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