|Friday, 29 June 2012 17:25|
WARSAW: Germany coach Joachim Loew revealed there were tears flowing in the changing room this morning following his side's exit from Euro 2012.
The hot favorites lost 2-1 to Italy - following two superb first-half goals by Manchester City striker Mario Balotelli.
The Germans replied via a penalty by Mesut Oesil in stoppage time.
Loew spoke of his players' heartbreak at being knocked out at the semi-final stage but maintained the Germans had performed well in this tournament.
"In the locker room, tears are flowing. It's as quiet as a mouse in the locker room, no one saying a word," he said.
"We're very disappointed but we should not make the mistake of questioning everything. The team played a great tournament."
Loew blamed the defeat on defensive errors which provided the Italians with an unassailable two-goal lead but praised the efforts in the second half.
"The goals were scored because of mistakes in our defence. But the team showed their heart in the second-half. Italy were 2-0 up, so it's hard to turn the game around," he said.
Loew also explained his decision to hand Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos his first start in the tournament and bring in Lukas Podolski and Mario Gomez back into the team.
"With Kroos, I wanted to be stronger in the center, and limit the midfield axis of Andrea Pirlo and Riccardo Montolivo," he said.
"Gomez had scored three goals in the tournament so far and was good in training. Podolski was also good in training. We won in the few matches with Podolski and Gomez."