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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 July 2006, 11:50 GMT 12:50 UK
Italians euphoric as Germans lick wounds
German head coach Juergen Klinsmann (C) congratulates Italian defender Marco Materazzi (R) as German midfielder Sebastian Kehl (L) looks on
Italy struck twice in the dying moments of extra time

Newspapers in Italy and Germany reflect starkly different emotions following Tuesday's World Cup semi-final.

Italian newspapers hail their team as conquering heroes after they beat Germany 2-0 in extra time. German commentators lament the result while praising the efforts of the national team.

"What a pity boys! You fought like world champions," runs a headline in Germany's Bild.

"The dream of Germany as world champions is over. Oh, how it hurts!"

Bild goes on to forecast a German victory in the play-off for third place on Saturday.

The dream is over
Die Welt

"We will come third on Saturday and won't complain," it says. "We say to Klinsi and all his boys: Thank you for a wonderful World Cup!"

"Millions of tears flow," says a headline in Stern. "Such high hopes, such deep sadness," runs a caption to a picture of tearful German fans.

A Die Welt headline proclaims: "A sad end to a great party."

"Klinsmann's team now plays for bronze. The dream is over," the paper says.

The theme is echoed in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

"The dream of the World Championship is over... It will take a little time for the great disappointment of Germany's players and fans to subside."

"But the attacking and passionate football, which brought Germany so much pleasure, is a prize which it will not be so easy to take from Juergen Klinsmann."

"A dream ends in tears", says Spiegel. The business paper

The success which has driven Italy barmy
La Gazzetta dello Sport

Handelsblatt carries the headline: "Thanks, boys!"

It continues: "The fans soon found their composure after the defeat: they celebrated their team; there was no trace of blame. The German 11 showed themselves to be good losers - and now look to the future."

For the German football magazine Kicker, "Italy's advance to the final is not undeserved. Germany fought very well, but in the end, were unlucky to lose."

Italy's main sports paper, La Gazzetta dello Sport, hails "the success which has driven Italy barmy".

Itself consumed by the victory, it describes it as "The most beautiful! Fantastic! Extraordinary!"

"Italy are in the final. We are. We are going to Berlin. It is now a fair question to wonder who is going stop this Italy."

Rome's Corriere dello Sport has the huge front-page headline: "We love you". The sub-head says: "World Cup: The Azzurri lions reach the final".

"Giants," reads another huge headline in Turin's TuttoSport.

The leading broadsheet Corriere della Sera says: "Two great goals and Italy reach the final."

"Germany defeated in yet another historic game," it goes on, referring to Italy's other victories over the Germans in the 1970 semi-final and the 1982 final.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

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