Italy 2 Austria 2

August 20, 2008 | Filed Under: Euro Box 

Emanuel Pogatetz put Austria in the lead against the run of play in the 14th minute before Marc Janko added a second in the 39th as Karel Bruckner’s reign as Austria coach got off to a dream start.

Martin Stranzl fired the ball against Alberto Gilardino and into the Austria net just seconds before half-time gave the world champions hope before debutant goalkeeper Ramadan Oczan gave Italy another gift with an own goal to level the scores midway through the second half.
Lippi included seven of his 2006 World Cup winners in his first team selection since returning to the helm in place of Roberto Donadoni.
Gilardino, who was an unused substitute in the World Cup final two years ago, was back in the frame again after being overlooked for much of Donadoni’s reign.
And the new Fiorentina striker had the first chance of the game after just two minutes when Gianluca Zambrotta and Antonio Di Natale played a neat one-two down the right with the former’s low cross just too far ahead of Gilardino.
Zambrotta was looking lively on the right and tested Alex Manninger with a powerful left-footed shot from 25 yards as Italy dominated the early proceedings, but it was Austria who went ahead with their first attack.Italy failed to clear their lines and the ball landed just in front of Pogatetz who volleyed firmly past Buffon from 10 yards.
Lippi indicated to his players to keep their calm and continue playing the way they were, but he showed signs of frustration when Gilardino missed his third chance of the game moments later as he failed to beat Manninger in a one-on-one situation.
Having failed to take their chance to get back on level terms, Italy found themselves two behind in the 39th minute.
A long throw-in found its way to Janko, who turned in an instant to divert the ball into the top corner via a deflection off Andrea Barzagli

Just as it seemed Italy would go into the interval two down, Di Natale raced forward and sent over a cross from the left which Stranzl tried to clear ahead of Gilardino but he could only strike the ball against the Italy striker’s chest and into the goal.
Italy captain Alessandro Del Piero, who had had a quiet first half, missed the next one-on-one opportunity for Italy before a bizarre own goal brought them level.
Oczan had barely entered the field to earn his first cap in the Austria goal when he flapped at a cross from Zambrotta and pushed the ball into his own goal.



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