'Humanly incredible': Sport world melts over 'lovely' moment

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·Sports Reporter
·4-min read
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Giorgio Chiellini embracing Jordi Alba (pictured left) and joking around (picture right) before penalty shootouts at Euro 2020.
Giorgio Chiellini (pictured left) showed a beautiful side to his character as he embraced interim Spain captain Jordi Alba before penalty shootouts at Euro 2020. (Getty Images)

Italy are one step away from a remarkable Euro 2020 triumph after defeating Spain in the pressure cooker of a penalty shootout, but a moment between Italian captain Giorgo Chiellini and Spanish star Jordi Alba has left the sport world swooning.

The semi-final match between the European footballing giants lived up to its billing with Spain putting on arguably their best passing performance of the tournament to peg the Italians back at Wembley for the majority of the game.

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But, completely against the run of play, Frederico Chiesa scored a wonder 'snatch and grab' goal to send the Italians at Wembley into euphoria.

Unfortunately for Italy, Spain equalised through substitute Alvaro Morata.

Extra-time was filled with dramatic moments, but the inevitable occurred as both Italy and Spain were level after 120 minutes of pulsating football.

What is considered the crucible of pressure in football, penalties would decide who would advance to the Euro 2020 final.

The two captains were called up to decide at which end (in front of which fan base) the penalties would take place and who would go first.

Chiellini and Alba share 'lovely' moment at Euro 2020

But in heartwarming scenes, Italian captain Chiellini appeared to drop any harboured nerves and was seen joking around with rival interim captain Alba.

Chiellini was seen jokingly punching Alba, hugging him and sharing a laugh.

Many fans joked Chiellini had lost his mind, considering how calm he was before such a tense moment, while others joked it was a cold-blooded psyche out.

Yet many fans around the world pointed out the scenes showed the essence of football and what the 'beautiful' game is all about.

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Italy and Spain have collided four times at major tournaments in recent memory.

The scenes were reminiscent of the close bond former captains Iker Casillas and Gigi Buffon shared as they embraced before two penalty shootouts between the teams.

Legendary keeper Casillas tweeted his friend Buffon after being reminded about their past encounters as he watched Spain fall.

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In the end, it was Chiellini who had the final laugh.

Spain and Italy both missed their first attempts, before Morata went from hero to zero as a tame effort was saved from Donnarumma.

And in a moment described as 'ice cold' Chelsea midfielder Jorginho stepped up, stuttered, hopped and sent Simon the wrong way to send Wembley into raptures.

Watch 'Mind Games', the new series from Yahoo Sport Australia exploring the often brutal mental toil elite athletes go through in pursuit of greatness:

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