EURO 2020 FINAL: ITALY CROWNED EUROPEAN CHAMPION, ENGLAND’S WAIT CONTINUES
Italy won on penalties 3-2.
The Italian team finally won the European Cup after beating England on penalties. The winner was determined after a draw in the first 90 minutes.
Italy tasted the European cup after failing in the 2012 final, and this achievement is the second after they won in 1968 or 53 years later. This result also extends England's bad record of 55 years without a title from an international tournament.
England also failed to capitalize on the advantage of being at Wembley's home stadium which was full of its own fans. Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma managed to save three England kickers from the penalty spot in the final seconds.
England's failure this time added to their bad record in penalty shootouts. England lost major tournaments in 1990, 1996, 1998, 2004, 2006, and 2012.
The final result of Euro 2020 marks the revival of the Italian team after four years ago failing to qualify for the World Cup for the first time in six decades. In this tournament, Italy even brought statistics of never losing for 34 matches under coach Roberto Mancini.
The game is fairly favourable for England. Luke Shaw brought England 1-0 up through a quick goal in the 2nd minute and became the fastest goal in the European Cup. Italy could only reply to a goal in the second half, to be precise in the 67th minute through Leonardo Bonucci.
England fielded Harry Kane, Harry Maguire, Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, and Bukayo Saka in the penalty shootout. Italy put their trust in Domenico Berardi, Andrea Belotti, Leonardo Bonucci, Federico Bernardeschi and Jorginho,
Italy's key player is actually in the hands of goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma. The 22-year-old goalkeeper managed to ward off kicks from Rashford, Sancho, and Saka to finally bring Italy to the championship.
This result made England coach, Gareth Southgate, receive strong criticism from fans. Southgate revealed the decision to choose the penalty taker was his decision. He hopes that no one blames Saka, Sancho, and Rashford for their failure to execute a penalty and hopes that the English team can get through this defeat as a team.
Southgate admits the England side failed to take advantage of the center area and continued under pressure from Italy. The possession of the ball was also minimal, which allowed Italy to attack freely, something England already knew but failed to anticipate.
Before the penalty shootout, the match was tight on both sides of the team's defence. In the early minutes, Italy immediately started to attack and did not let England take the ball much.
The Italian defence looked so solid that Shaw's quick goal from Trippier's pass was pure luck. In the second half, Italy immediately pressed the English defence and scored a goal in the 67th minute.
Despite losing, this result is quite good for the English team. Before the match, England fans even believed their team would bring the trophy even though they still lost on penalties in the final result.
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