Italy had the better chances in an intriguing first half against England, leaving the score 0-0 at halftime Sunday in the European Championship quarterfinals.

In perhaps the toughest quarterfinal match to predict, Italy and England set the tone by both going close in the first five minutes.

Daniele De Rossi hit the post in the third minute with a spinning left-foot shot from 25 yards (meters) which beat goalkeeper Joe Hart's dive. Italy 'keeper Gianluigi Buffon then swatted away defender Glen Johnson's scooped shot from close-range.