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    Southgate says England penalty decisions rest with him

    Gareth Southgate England Euro 2020

    Euro Cup News   |   July 12, 2021

     

    England were beaten on penalties in the Euro 2020 final against Italy after three of their players failed to convert from the spot. England scored an early goal through Luke Shaw, but were pegged back for the majority of the game. Leonardo Bonucci scored a scrappy goal in the second half and Italy were got the much-deserved equaliser.

    The match went into a penalty shootout and despite being at an advantageous situation at some point, England lost the match. Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho were both brought on just before the penalty shootout for the sole purpose of dispatching their respective penalties but the duo failed in their attempt. The talking point was the last penalty which was given to Bukayo Saka.

    Bukayo Saka is one of the youngest members of the squad. He had never taken a penalty in a competitive match before and yet was entrusted with the responsibility of taking the final penalty. It was the most important kick of the ball in more than 5 decades from an England perspective. However, Saka’s penalty was saved by Donnarumma and the trophy was Italy’s.

    When asked what he would say to Saka, Southgate replied: “That it’s down to me. I chose the penalty takers based on what we’ve done in training and nobody is on their own. We’ve won together as a team and it’s absolutely on all of us in terms of not being able to win the game tonight.

    “But in terms of the penalties, that’s my call and totally rests with me.

    “We had two [penalty takers] go off earlier in the game, so that’s why we made the changes that we did. We’ve tracked what they’ve done with their clubs over a long period of time and what they’ve shown in training as well so that’s the process that worked for us in Russia and the Nations League, but tonight, it hasn’t quite worked.

    “We were well prepared and started well, but unfortunately, the guys weren’t able to convert tonight. They can’t look at themselves in terms of how they practised because they couldn’t do that anymore or any better.”

     

     

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