Despair for Germany duo

Schweinsteiger and Gomez reflect on Euro exit

Bastian Schweinsteiger: Already looking ahead to the 2014 World Cup

Mario Gomez: Endured a frustrating evening in semi-final showdown with Italy

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Bastian Schweinsteiger and Mario Gomez have expressed their disappointment in the wake of Germany's exit from Euro 2012.

Joachim Low's side were considered to be the team to beat at this summer's European Championship, having qualified with a perfect record and won all four of their tournament games leading up to the semi-finals.

They were, however, unable to book a return date with Spain in a repeat of the 2008 final as they came unstuck at the last four stage.

An inspired performance from Mario Balotelli put them to the sword on Thursday, as improving Italy secured a 2-1 success.

Bayern Munich midfielder Schweinsteiger admits defeat is hard to stomach, but is confident that Germany will bounce back stronger on the road to the 2014 World Cup.

Talented

"We have a very young and talented team and if every player stays on their path, then the quality will improve for the next tournament," he said.

"It's a positive thing that we've had this experience, especially for the players in their first tournament."

On the Italian setback, he added: "They were very clever. Italy are very experienced in terms of the system they play, and it's hard to play against.

"They did very well and managed to score the first goal. It was a mistake to give it away and we didn't manage to equalise.

"The second goal was even worse, and it was hard to find a way back against such an experienced side.

"We lacked a bit of luck and determination, balls bounced off and landed at the feet of the Italians, where it could have landed at our feet, which made it more difficult."

Disappointed

Bayern striker Gomez ended Euro 2012 with three goals to his name, but a frustrating evening against Italy saw him hauled off at half-time.

He said: "Congratulations to Italy, they played an excellent match. We didn't.

"It's difficult to find the right words now.

"We are very disappointed. We didn't image it like this. It will certainly take some time to digest all this.

"We all really believed in it and unfortunately, once again, it didn't happen."