Italy beat England to end 53 years waitJuly 12, 2021
One hundred and twenty minutes of pulsating, tension-soaked football was what it took Italy to beat England and end a 53 years wait for a European Championship title on Sunday in Wembley.
Both sides were looking at going into the history books when they qualified for the final and it was England who took the initiative early on as Luke Shaw capitalized on poor defending to send the home fans into frenzy.
Leonardo Bonucci brought Italy level in the 67th minute leaving both teams hunting for a winning goal as the game went all the way into extra time and penalties.
Marcos Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka failed to convert from the spot consecutively. The victory was Italy’s second from penalties this tournament having conquered Spain via the same route. It was also the first time any team has won more than one penalty shoot-out at a European Championship.
For England coach, Gareth Southgate, it was deja vu, as his penalty miss against Germany when England hosted in 1996 stopped the three lions from progressing to the final.
Italy will now represent Europe at the FIFA Confederations Cup – a dress rehearsal for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar