Euro 2020 final: England beaten by Italy on penalties

England’s bid to end their 55-year wait for a major trophy ended in the familiar agony of defeat in a penalty shootout as Italy claimed the Euro 2020 crown at Wembley.

On a night of anticipation, tension and ultimate heartbreak in a feverish atmosphere, England looked on course for their most joyous day since 30 July 1966 when Luke Shaw gave them the perfect start after two minutes.

Italy, unbeaten in 33 matches before this final, slowly edged their way back into the game and were level in the 67th minute when Leonardo Bonucci pounced after England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford turned Marco Verratti’s header on to a post.

And after a tense period of extra time failed to find a winner, it was on to penalties and bitter disappointment for England manager Gareth Southgate and his players, who had gone into this final on a wave of expectation and high emotion.

England missed three of their five penalties, Marcus Rashford hitting a post and Gianluigi Donnarumma denying Jadon Sancho before – so cruelly for such a fine young player – Arsenal teenager Bukayo Saka also saw the giant Italy goalkeeper save his spot-kick.

Harry Kane and Harry Maguire were on target for England while Pickford kept hopes alive with saves from Andrea Belotti and Jorginho while Domenico Berardi, Bonucci and Federico Bernardeschi scored for Italy.

The tearful 19-year-old Saka, who showed such courage to step forward, was consoled by England team-mates and manager Southgate but there was no real consolation for them or the expectant fans packed into Wembley.

England come up short as Italy triumph

England’s years of hurt go on but it looked for the first 30 minutes of this final that the moment the country has waited more than 20,000 days for had finally arrived.

Southgate’s side came firing out of the blocks and the manager’s one change of replacing Saka with Kieran Trippier paid an instant dividend as he ran on to Kane’s perfect pass to find the onrushing Shaw at the far post and he slammed an emphatic finish past Donnarumma.

England were up and running and urged on by a vast, frenzied crowd they had this talented, streetwise Italian side on the back foot until they suddenly gained a foothold in the closing phase of the first half.

Italy dominated possession, England lost impetus and it was no surprise when they restored parity, then looking the more likely winners as Southgate’s side, so full of running early on, started to labour, particularly after losing the outstanding Declan Rice to a knock.

Southgate surprisingly waited until extra time to introduce Jack Grealish but by that stage the game was locked on course for penalties and so it proved.

He introduced Sancho and Rashford in the closing moments, presumably in readiness for penalties, but sadly for Southgate, who has got so much right in Euro 2020, this was one move that did not pay off as both failed with their spot-kicks.

Pickford performed heroics to save to penalties but he was also left in tears after England’s fate was sealed.

Italy edged over the line and both Southgate and his players looked devastated as they took sympathetic applause from England’s fans, who had arrived with such high hopes but filed out of Wembley with their dreams of a major trophy shattered once more.

England came close when they reached the semi-final of the World Cup in Moscow in 2018 but this loss will cut even deeper after they made such smooth progress to the final and had the chance to finally claim a second trophy in what was effectively a home tournament with its climax at Wembley.

They have made progress – but still England could not clear the final hurdle.

Improving England offer real hope

Gareth Southgate
Southgate has led England to a World Cup semi-final and now a European Championship final in the last two tournaments

England’s loss will be felt deeply after such impressive progress through the knockout stage with wins against Germany, Ukraine and Denmark.

Southgate must now digest whether he got it right in the final when it came to his approach, substitutions and penalty takers but when the dust settles England can reflect on progress made.

England took one step further than they did in Russia and Southgate now has a potent blend of youth and experience to work with as he plots a course to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Saka came of age in this tournament while England have exciting young in the shape of Sancho, Phil Foden, Mason Mount and Jude Bellingham, augmented by Grealish.

Raheem Sterling had had a stellar campaign, Kane showed flashes of his world-class ability and the central defensive pair of John Stones and Maguire were solid. Pickford also made an outstanding contribution in goal.

This will offer no comfort in the hours following such a devastating loss, but England can at least move forward with optimism.

Player of the match

ShawLuke Shaw

with an average of 7.66

Italy

  1. Squad number14Player nameChiesa
    Average rating

    7.20

  2. Squad number21Player nameG Donnarumma
    Average rating

    6.86

  3. Squad number19Player nameBonucci
    Average rating

    6.77

  4. Squad number3Player nameChiellini
    Average rating

    6.61

  5. Squad number6Player nameVerratti
    Average rating

    6.25

  6. Squad number8Player nameJorginho
    Average rating

    6.10

  7. Squad number13Player nameEmerson
    Average rating

    6.01

  8. Squad number5Player nameLocatelli
    Average rating

    5.95

  9. Squad number10Player nameInsigne
    Average rating

    5.95

  10. Squad number20Player nameBernardeschi
    Average rating

    5.87

  11. Squad number9Player nameBelotti
    Average rating

    5.87

  12. Squad number2Player nameDi Lorenzo
    Average rating

    5.80

  13. Squad number24Player nameFlorenzi
    Average rating

    5.77

  14. Squad number18Player nameBarella
    Average rating

    5.77

  15. Squad number11Player nameBerardi
    Average rating

    5.75

  16. Squad number16Player nameCristante
    Average rating

    5.64

  17. Squad number17Player nameImmobile
    Average rating

    5.44

England

  1. Squad number3Player nameShaw
    Average rating

    7.66

  2. Squad number14Player namePhillips
    Average rating

    7.44

  3. Squad number4Player nameRice
    Average rating

    7.24

  4. Squad number1Player namePickford
    Average rating

    7.17

  5. Squad number2Player nameWalker
    Average rating

    6.71

  6. Squad number6Player nameMaguire
    Average rating

    6.60

  7. Squad number12Player nameTrippier
    Average rating

    6.57

  8. Squad number5Player nameStones
    Average rating

    6.52

  9. Squad number7Player nameGrealish
    Average rating

    5.91

  10. Squad number10Player nameSterling
    Average rating

    5.66

  11. Squad number9Player nameKane
    Average rating

    5.52

  12. Squad number19Player nameMount
    Average rating

    5.39

  13. Squad number8Player nameHenderson
    Average rating

    4.83

  14. Squad number25Player nameSaka
    Average rating

    4.42

  15. Squad number11Player nameRashford
    Average rating

    3.31

  16. Squad number17Player nameSancho
    Average rating

    3.30

Line-ups

Italy

Formation 4-3-3

  • 21G Donnarumma
  • 2Di Lorenzo
  • 19BonucciBooked at 55mins
  • 3ChielliniBooked at 90mins
  • 13EmersonSubstituted forFlorenziat 118′minutes
  • 18BarellaBooked at 47minsSubstituted forCristanteat 54′minutes
  • 8JorginhoBooked at 114mins
  • 6VerrattiSubstituted forLocatelliat 96′minutes
  • 14ChiesaSubstituted forBernardeschiat 86′minutes
  • 17ImmobileSubstituted forBerardiat 55′minutes
  • 10InsigneBooked at 84minsSubstituted forBelottiat 90′minutes

Substitutes

  • 1Sirigu
  • 5Locatelli
  • 9Belotti
  • 11Berardi
  • 12Pessina
  • 15Acerbi
  • 16Cristante
  • 20Bernardeschi
  • 23Bastoni
  • 24Florenzi
  • 25Tolói
  • 26Meret

England

Formation 3-4-2-1

  • 1Pickford
  • 2WalkerSubstituted forSanchoat 120′minutes
  • 5Stones
  • 6MaguireBooked at 106mins
  • 12TrippierSubstituted forSakaat 71′minutes
  • 14Phillips
  • 4RiceSubstituted forHendersonat 74′minutesSubstituted forRashfordat 120′minutes
  • 3Shaw
  • 10Sterling
  • 19MountSubstituted forGrealishat 99′minutes
  • 9Kane

Substitutes

  • 7Grealish
  • 8Henderson
  • 11Rashford
  • 13Ramsdale
  • 15Mings
  • 16Coady
  • 17Sancho
  • 18Calvert-Lewin
  • 23Johnstone
  • 24James
  • 25Saka
  • 26Bellingham

Referee:
Björn Kuipers

Attendance:
67,173

Match Stats

Live Text

  1. Match ends, Italy 1(3), England 1(2).

  2. Penalty Shootout ends, Italy 1(3), England 1(2).

  3. Penalty saved! Bukayo Saka (England) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, left footed shot saved in the bottom right corner.

  4. Penalty saved! Jorginho (Italy) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom left corner.

  5. Penalty saved! Jadon Sancho (England) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom right corner.

  6. Goal! Italy 1(3), England 1(2). Federico Bernardeschi (Italy) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the centre of the goal.

  7. Penalty missed! Still Italy 1(2), England 1(2). Marcus Rashford (England) hits the left post with a right footed shot.

  8. Goal! Italy 1(2), England 1(2). Leonardo Bonucci (Italy) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the top left corner.

  9. Goal! Italy 1(1), England 1(2). Harry Maguire (England) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the top right corner.

  10. Penalty saved! Andrea Belotti (Italy) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom right corner.

  11. Goal! Italy 1(1), England 1(1). Harry Kane (England) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.

  12. Goal! Italy 1(1), England 1. Domenico Berardi (Italy) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the bottom left corner.

  13. Penalty Shootout begins Italy 1, England 1.

  14. Second Half Extra Time ends, Italy 1, England 1.

  15. Giovanni Di Lorenzo (Italy) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  16. Foul by Bukayo Saka (England).

  17. Attempt missed. Bryan Cristante (Italy) header from the left side of the six yard box misses to the right. Assisted by Federico Bernardeschi with a cross following a corner.

  18. Substitution, England. Jadon Sancho replaces Kyle Walker.

  19. Substitution, England. Marcus Rashford replaces Jordan Henderson.

  20. Corner, Italy. Conceded by Jordan Henderson.

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