Gianluigi Donnarumma came up clutch as Italy beat England on penalty shootouts to lift the UEFA Euro 2020 trophy at Wembley on Sunday night.
England were off to the perfect start as within two minutes Luke Shaw put them in front with a delectable half-volley from Kieran Trippier’s cross to send Wembley into a frenzy. But, Italy slowly grew into the game and were able to get their rhythm going, although they did not test Jordan Pickford much as the first half ended 1-0 in favour of the Three Lions.
The second half, though, was all Italy from the word go, barring an early penalty appeal by Raheem Sterling, as the Azzurri kept the hosts pinned back in their own half and ramped up the pressure, with Pickford even having to make a save to deny Federico Chiesa. However, the pressure eventually paid off as Leonardo Bonucci was at hand to divert home a rebound after Marco Verratti’s header had been saved at the hour mark.
Italy looked like the team likeliest to score for the rest of the game, but a goal wasn’t forthcoming, as the tie went into extra time. Both teams had half-chances in the added half an hour, but the goals weren’t breached, leading to the dreaded penalties.
Italy’s second kick from Andrea Belotti was saved allowing England to eke ahead. However, the Three Lions missed each of the next three – Marcus Rashford hit the post while Gianluigi Donnarumma saved Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka’s efforts to lead Italy to their first major tournament win since 2006, while heartbreak ensued for England after coming so very close.
Here are our player ratings from a thrilling grand finale at Wembley on Sunday night.
Gianluigi Donnarumma: 9/10
Did not have much to do in regulation time with England mustering up just one shot on target. Not a lot he could have done about Shaw’s strike. But just brilliant in the shootout, as he made two top saves to deny Sancho and Saka. Commanding in the box throughout the game. Deserving of the Player of the Tournament award.
🚫 3 clean sheets, 9 saves
😮 Semi-finals penalty shoot-out hero
😱 Final penalty shoot-out hero
— UEFA EURO 2020 (@EURO2020) July 11, 2021
Giovanni Di Lorenzo: 7/10
Got dragged inside, allowing Shaw acres of space to make the run and fire the ball into the back of the net. Had difficulties initially, but grew into the game like the rest of his teammates and ended on a strong note.
Leonardo Bonucci: 8/10
The veteran defender, like the rest of the Italy backline, had some early jitters after England’s positive start, but was crucial to them being able to settle down, as he helped keep the ball with precise passes, while being solid at the back. Got his team back into the game with a scrappy equaliser, then dispatched a cool penalty in the shootout. Top-notch.
Giorgio Chiellini: 7.5/10
Had problems early on with Kane dropping deep, which meant he was dragged out of position at times. But grew into the game with time, winning everything in the air. Cynical foul on Bukayo Saka when beaten for pace aside, did his job well, with the block on Raheem Sterling in extra time being a standout moment.
Leonardo Bonucci and Giorgio Chiellini both completed the entire #EURO2020 tournament without being successfully dribbled past by an opposition player or making an error leading to a shot.
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) July 11, 2021
Emerson Palmieri: 6/10
Gave Trippier too much space to pick out a teammate for the opening goal. Lacked the same sort of thrust that Leonardo Spinazzola offered but got better with time, making some inroads down the left and even delivered one or two dangerous crosses as well.
Nicolo Barella: 4/10
One of the poor performers for Italy on the night, the Inter Milan star just could not get going as he struggled to escape the attention of Declan Rice and Kalvin Phillips. Passing wasn’t on the radar, touches let him down and was booked for a challenge on Harry Kane. Withdrawn early in the second half.
Shaked off an early knee injury and helped Italy regain control of the game and maintain it with his usual cool and composure in the middle of the park. Perhaps, a tad lucky not to see red for a poor challenge on Jack Grealish. Had his penalty saved as well.
Marco Verratti: 8/10
Another player who had a key role in Italy eventually settling into their rhythm after the frantic start, Verratti oozed quality each time he was on the ball and offered plenty of bite and aggression off it. Retained possession well, played some lovely passes forward and played a role in the equalising goal by drawing a save from Pickford after which Bonucci turned the ball home.
Federico Chiesa: 8/10
What a season.
— Chiesa 🇮🇹 (@Hazariio) July 12, 2021
The liveliest player for Italy for most of the game, the young winger looked to make things happen each time he got on the ball and ran at the England defence. Great run in the first half but his effort went wide, then forced a save from Pickford after the break. A constant threat, stretched the England defence before he had to be taken off with an injury.
Ciro Immobile: 4/10
Offered so very little at the top, never really seemed like he was in tune with those around him. Subbed off just ten minutes into the second half.
Lorenzo Insigne: 6/10
Rattled after the early goal, Insigne looked uncharacteristically lacking on the ball in the first half, as he failed to do much of note. Improved after the break, getting into dangerous spaces and carving out a few chances while he was also more willing to help his full-back out.
Bryan Cristante: 7/10
Replaced Barella in the 55th minute. Offered something different to the Inter Milan man with his physicality. Kept the ball alive with a flicked header leading to the equaliser, while also making a few darting runs forward.
Domenico Berardi: 6/10
On for Immobile in the 55th minute. Offered more than the man he replaced, making positive runs off the ball.
Federico Bernardeschi: 6/10
A downgrade on Chiesa after replacing him in the 86th minute. Tucked away a fine penalty though.
Andrea Belotti: 5/10
On for Insigne at the onset of extra time. Saw his penalty saved.
Manuel Locatelli: 6/10
Came on for Verratti in the 96th minute. Helped Italy drag the game to penalties.
Alessandro Florenzi: N/A
Late sub for Emerson in extra time.
Jordan Pickford: 9/10
— TheMightyBlues (@MightyBluesYT) July 11, 2021
Made a fine stop to deny Chiesa in the second half, not tested a great deal before that. Brilliant to stop Verratti’s header but unlucky to see Bonucci pounce on the rebound. Two top saves in the shootouts as well to deny Belotti and Jorginho – the latter under an immense amount of pressure to keep England alive.
Kyle Walker: 6.5/10
His decoy run was key to Trippier being given that bit of time to pick out Shaw for the opener. Pace was crucial plenty of times as he defended solidly, although there were times his passing was a bit scratchy.
John Stones: 7/10
Solid for the most part of the night, keeping a check on Immobile for the duration he was on the pitch with ease. Was overpowered by Chiellini in the lead-up to the equalising goal, though. Otherwise, pretty strong in the air, good with the ball at his feet as well.
Harry Maguire: 8/10
Organised the backline well, made several crucial interventions throughout, especially after Italy amped up things in the second half, while always being ready to step out with the ball in an effort to push his team forward. Thumped his penalty into the top corner.
Harry Maguire’s penalty!
— MUHQ News (@MUHQNews) July 11, 2021
Kieran Trippier: 7/10
Recalled into the lineup, justified his selection just two minutes in with a lovely cross for Shaw for the opening goal. Pace caused problems to the Italy backline, although, he faded quite a bit after the break before eventually being subbed off.
Kalvin Phillips: 7/10
Full of energy and purpose, throughout the 120 minutes, as he strived hard to keep Italy away from his goal. Tenacious and strong in his challenges, the Leeds United man seemed to choose the safe option when on the ball, which was the only gripe.
Declan Rice: 7/10
Like Phillips, did well to break things up in the middle of the park with crucial interventions and even made a couple of promising runs forward with the ball, although nothing came of it. Taken off for Jordan Henderson as he appeared exhausted.
Luke Shaw: 8/10
What an occasion to score his first goal for his nation and what a strike it was! ‘Shawberto Carlos’ lived up to his nickname in that moment of quality as he started the move, before making a late run into the box and striking the ball sweetly to put England in front. However, wasn’t able to do more of that with time as Italy regained control and his team dropped deep. Defended resolutely throughout.
1:57 – Luke Shaw's opener was the quickest ever goal scored in the final of the European Championships, as well as his first ever for the England national team. Dream. #ENG #EURO2020 pic.twitter.com/l80WW6f4ZL
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 11, 2021
Raheem Sterling: 6/10
Pace and directness caused Italy some issues but he wasn’t at his best level for much of the game. Had a 50-50 penalty shout turned down in the second half, got into a dangerous position in extra time but had the ball taken off his legs by Chiellini.
Mason Mount: 5/10
Worked extremely hard without the ball, but hardly offered any sort of creative influence on the night. Needed to be stronger up against Verratti in the lead-up to the equaliser. Should have made way for Jack Grealish much earlier in the game.
Harry Kane: 6/10
Dropped deep to good effect in the opening exchanges and picked out Trippier’s run with a good pass leading to the goal. But it was downhill from that point on though, as the England captain became pretty much anonymous at the top, as he failed to trouble the Italy defence or offer the kind of link-up and ball retention he had in the first period. No shot at goal, no chance created but did dispatch his penalty.
0 – Harry Kane didn't attempt a shot or create a chance for only the second time in his 61 games for England, with the other coming in a 29-minute substitute appearance against Switzerland in 2018. Squeezed. #ENG #ITA #EURO2020 pic.twitter.com/IaxPEZ7mJw
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 11, 2021
Bukayo Saka: 6/10
Replaced Trippier in the 71st minute, leading to a change of formation. Offered pace and energy, although wasn’t able to make much of an impact. Saw the decisive penalty being saved by Donnarumma.
Jordan Henderson: 6/10
On for Rice in the 74th minute. Played some neat passes forward to carve out half-chances before being withdrawn deep in stoppage time. Given his experience, perhaps Southgate would have done well to trust him on penalties rather than going with three youngsters, two of whom were on the field for only a matter of minutes.
Jack Grealish: 6/10
Replaced Mount ten minutes into extra time, too late for him to try and change things up. Again, one has to wonder whether Southgate could have been more proactive with his substitutions.
Marcus Rashford: N/A
Brought on late in extra time for the penalties. Hardly had a touch of the ball before stepping up to take the spot-kick and ended up hitting post.
Jadon Sancho: N/A
Same as above, with the only difference being his effort was saved by Donnarumma.