Italy are not my bogey team, says Germany's Kroos

PARIS: German players have no interest in thinking about past losing battles against Italy as they prepare to face them in the Euro 2016 quarter-finals on Saturday, with midfielder Toni Kroos sounding confident they will finally emerge victorious.

The Germans have lost all knockout tournament matches against Italy stretching back to 1970 but playmaker Kroos was in no mood to discuss them.

"Why should I have an Italy trauma? How often was I there?" he snapped, when asked about Germany's dismal track record against the Italians. "I don't have a problem talking about Italy. I just don't have any Italy trauma."

"The players are on fire but I do not think that anyone will lose it," he said. "These players play constantly such high level games. They are determined and are motivated but they will not be over-nervous or cramped up."

"There is no fear, but joy for this game. These games make the heart beat faster."