Germany head coach Joachim Loew addresses the media during a press conference on Tuesday. (AP Photo) (Associated Press)
Gdansk (Poland): Germany will not be seeking revenge for a bitter 2006 World Cup semi-final defeat on home soil when they meet Italy again at the same stage of Euro 2012 in Warsaw on Thursday, coach Joachim Loew said.
Loew, who was Juergen Klinsmann's assistant at the time, and 34-year-old forward Miroslav Klose, who played in their last-gasp 2-0 defeat against eventual world champions Italy in extra time, said there was nothing that could link the two matches.
Three-time European champions Germany have never beaten Italy in seven tournament matches.
"No game has anything to say to us. Not the old ones and not the one in 2006," a relaxed Loew said on Tuesday.
"In football there is no such thing as revenge. The past plays absolutely no role for us or for our young players who may know things only from history," said the 52-year-old.
Germany may be more interested in their more recent encounter with Italy, a 1-1 friendly international draw in February 2011, Loew said.
"That was against a new Italy, stronger in offence. They are a different team than in 2010 and so are we," he said.
The Italians have gradually improved in the tournament and moved into the last four courtesy of a 4-2 penalty shootout victory against England.
"I think it is silly to talk about a mental block (against Italy)," said veteran Klose, who was set for an evening at the cinema later on Tuesday, watching the yet to be released Amazing Spiderman movie with his team mates.
"Yes it was a trauma (in 2006). It lasted a bit but now it is gone. This was six years ago and we have a different team and I am convinced we will do things differently."
One thing, however, that has remained the same for Loew is the quality of Italy midfielder Andrea Pirlo who will occupy a special place in Germany's preparations.
"He is going through a renaissance. After 2010 you thought he was past his prime. But he is a genius strategist who plays a lot of balls through and he can play them where it hurts the other team the most.
"Obviously there will be no man-marking him but we know how he plays and we will talk about it with the team."
Loew played down the importance of a shorter break for the Italians, who played 120 minutes against England on Sunday, while Germany needed 90 minutes in their 4-2 quarter-final win over Greece two days earlier.
Italy coach Cesare Prandelli complained on Monday his team had too little time to recover compared to Germany's longer break.
"I do not think it is a drawback for them," said Loew. "Four days is enough to recover and I did not see them tired. Quite the opposite, it was the England players who looked tired after a certain stage.
"Every professional player who takes care of himself should be able to recover 100 percent in four days. So I do not think they will still be suffering from that game.