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Italy outlasts England on penalty kicks to win Euro 2020 title

Italy has claimed its second title and England loses a heartbreaker.

Italy v England - UEFA Euro 2020: Final
Jadon Sancho of England has their team’s fourth penalty in the penalty shoot out saved by Gianluigi Donnarumma of Italy during the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship Final between Italy and England at Wembley Stadium on July 11, 2021 in London, England.
Photo by Paul Ellis - Pool/Getty Images

It took regulation time, extra time and penalty kicks but the result is finally in. Italy is the Euro 2020 champion, defeating England in a thrilling back-and-forth final. Here is video of the clinching save. Check out every penalty kick from the match here.

Jordan Pickford stopped Italy’s second penalty, but Gianluigi Donnarumma also got a save when Marcus Rashford hit the post on the third penalty kick to keep the shootout level. Donnarumma denied Jadon Sancho on the following kick to set up a potential winning moment for the Azzurri. Jorginho, who send Italy to the final against Spain in the shootout, attempted to do the honors again but Pickford was up to the challenge to keep England alive. However, Donnarumma made his third straight save of the shootout, denying Bukayo Saka to win the title.

Italy captures its second Euro championship, last winning in 1968. The Azzurri had opportunities in 2000 and 2012, but failed to get the job done. For England, it’s another brutal ending to a quality campaign. Losing at Wembley only adds more salt to the wound.

More than half the betting public backed Italy in the contest at +235, according to DraftKings Sportsbook. The Azzurri had 59 percent of the money and 52 percent of bets entering the final. England was the favorite at +148 and had 30 percent of the money and 34 percent of the bets from the public.

Luke Shaw got England on the board with the fastest goal in Euro final history with a brilliant run down the left side to receive a feed from Kieran Trippier. The fullback was able to send the ball into the net with a deflection off the post to give England the early advantage.

From that point, Italy became the more aggressive team. Federico Chiesa and Lorenzo Insigne made several dangerous runs but England’s defenders were able to turn them away. Pickford made a few great saves to maintain the shutout, including a rocket from Chiesa.

England was able to make a few chances from set pieces, where it has excelled under Gareth Southgate. Harry Maguire had a potentially dangerous header, but Donnarumma turned it away.

Italy eventually got on the board in the 67th minute off a corner kick. Marco Verratti was able to send a header on frame after the ball came across the box, but his attempt took a bounce off the post and landed in front of the goal. Veteran defender Leonardo Bonucci cleaned up the play to bring the Azzurri level.

The Italians made more chances after drawing level, but England’s defense held steady through regular time.

Kalvin Phillips blasted a shot off a corner which could’ve been the winner for England in the first half of extra time. The corner came from a strong counterattack with Raheem Sterling leading the way. Phillips was able to sneak the ball through a host of players, but missed the goal as well. England had significantly more attacking play in the first extra time, but Pickford turned away a great cross from the Italians in what was the best attack from either team in the period.

England continued to push in the second half of extra time, with substitute Jack Grealish and Sterling linking up for a strong chance. Giorgio Chiellini, who made great recoveries multiple times in the game to prevent England from getting chances, made yet another successful individual challenge. Neither team was able to break the tie in extra time, setting up the shootout which eventually went in Italy’s favor.