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England reach Euro 2020 final: Gareth Southgate ‘so pleased for our country’

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England cast aside the "suffering" of their World Cup defeat in 2018 to book a place in Sunday's Euro 2020 final, said manager Gareth Southgate.

The Three Lions lost to Croatia after extra time in the semi-finals of the World Cup three years ago.

But they came from behind to beat Denmark 2-1 on Wednesday, meaning they will be in a men's major tournament final for the first time in 55 years.

"We've managed to put that right," Southgate told ITV.

"I'm so proud of the players. It's an incredible occasion to be a part of. We knew it wouldn't be straightforward.

"When you've waited as long as we have to get through a semi-final, the players – considering the limited international experience some of them have – have done an incredible job."

An own goal from Denmark captain Simon Kjaer cancelled out Mikkel Damsgaard's opener, before Harry Kane grabbed victory for England in extra time by slotting home the rebound after his penalty was saved.

England will face Italy in the final, which will be played at Wembley in front of about 60,000 fans on Sunday.

"The most pleasing thing is we've given the fans and nation a fantastic night and the journey carries on for another four days," said Southgate.

"We've got to enjoy the fact we're in the final but there's one more massive hurdle to conquer."

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live, he said Italy were a "fantastic team".

"We know the size of the task, we know they have those two warriors at the back who have seen all this before," he said.

"But what a brilliant moment for us. Let's savour tonight then we can think about that on the coach back."

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Forward Raheem Sterling praised England's response to conceding their first goal in the tournament.

"It was a top performance," said Sterling, who won the penalty which Kane converted at the second attempt, after Kasper Schmeichel saved his initial effort.

"We had to dig in deep. We responded well and showed good spirit. We knew it would be difficult.

"We stayed patient and we knew with the legs and aggressiveness we have in the team we'd be OK. It's another step in the right direction."

Skipper Kane added: "We got there when it mattered. We reacted really well and we're in a final at home. What a feeling.

"We know it's going to be a very tough game against Italy. We've had a great tournament so far. One more game to go at home."

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367 commentsShowLatestOldestHighest RatedMost RepliedJ

Comment posted by Jay, today at 00:50Jay

00:50Gareth & the lads so far..

Topped the group
1 Conceded
10 Goals
0 Suspensions
Beat 2018 World Cup finalists
Beat Germany 2.0
Beat a quality Danish team
Consecutive major tournament Semi Final
First Final since 1966
Best defense in the tournament
Great morale in the camp

Well done Gareth, the lads, & all the backroom staff 👏🏼6312G

Reply posted by geoffinho, today at 00:52geoffinho

00:52to Jay"Gareth & the lads so far..Topped the group 1 Conceded 10 Goals0 Suspensions Beat 2018 World Cup finalistsBeat Germany 2.0 Beat a quality Danish team Consecutive major tournament Semi Final First Final since 1966Best defense in the tournamentGreat morale in the camp Well done Gareth, the lads, & all the backroom staff 👏🏼"geoffinho replied: You forgot the inflatable unicorns!203More replies (8)downI

Comment posted by Izzy, today at 00:45Izzy

00:45from the players not singing the national anthem and looking like they hated eachother 5 or so years ago to where we are now, southgate has done an incredible job regardless of what the result is on sunday484P

Reply posted by psychobabble, today at 03:13psychobabble

03:13to Izzy"from the players not singing the national anthem and looking like they hated eachother 5 or so years ago to where we are now, southgate has done an incredible job regardless of what the result is on sunday"psychobabble replied: The national anthem is a load of old cobblers. Everyone who has ever played for England has wanted to win and don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise. We have ALWAYS been behind the team and they have ALWAYS played their hearts out. Come on England!22C

Comment posted by christhepirate, today at 00:30christhepirate

00:30Humility in a leader combined with acknowledgement of others’ efforts are fabulous assets.

Gareth Southgate is a class act and we could all learn a thing or two from the way he handles himself.518E

Reply posted by eagles2008, today at 00:56eagles2008

00:56to christhepirate"Humility in a leader combined with acknowledgement of others’ efforts are fabulous assets.Gareth Southgate is a class act and we could all learn a thing or two from the way he handles himself."eagles2008 replied: He doesn’t handle himself well tactically on a touchline in 90 minutes. A very lucky man to have such a good squad.556More replies (12)downC

Comment posted by cotteekid, today at 00:28cotteekid

00:28Well done England … Sundays game should be a classic, may the best team win333S

Reply posted by Suki Bapswent, today at 00:36Suki Bapswent

00:36to cotteekid"Well done England … Sundays game should be a classic, may the best team win"Suki Bapswent replied: I believe they’re called Italy.730More replies (10)downM

Comment posted by Mike Edwards, today at 00:29Mike Edwards

00:29Loved it. Atmosphere was amazing.283S

Reply posted by Scousepower, today at 00:51Scousepower

00:51to Mike Edwards"Loved it. Atmosphere was amazing."Scousepower replied: wait till Sunday ay ;)25More replies (1)downL

Comment posted by Lets Agree To Disagree, today at 00:42Lets Agree To Disagree

00:42Gareth Southgate can finally that 1996 monkey off his shoulders for good.296F

Comment posted by Fan Of Whoever Plays Man Utd, today at 00:39Fan Of Whoever Plays Man Utd

00:39He has a right to be pleased, he is now at the very least England’s second most successful manager of all time.
He wins on Sunday and it will be Sir Gareth very soon.274K

Reply posted by KLOPP OUT, today at 00:48KLOPP OUT

00:48to Fan Of Whoever Plays Man Utd"He has a right to be pleased, he is now at the very least England’s second most successful manager of all time. He wins on Sunday and it will be Sir Gareth very soon."KLOPP OUT replied: No chance we’re winning. 🤚

We had to cheat to get past a small team who got 3 points in their group. 🤮1358More replies (14)downM

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Comment posted by mw69, today at 00:30mw69

00:30What a great performance,when we went ahead we played like Italy, Denmark didn’t have one shot on goal.Sterling was brilliant,how fit is he!It finally coming home!3310E

Reply posted by eagles2008, today at 00:58eagles2008

00:58to mw69"What a great performance,when we went ahead we played like Italy, Denmark didn’t have one shot on goal.Sterling was brilliant,how fit is he!It finally coming home!"eagles2008 replied: Sterling was lucky to play the whole game, very poor tonight and cheated to get us into the final.743More replies (13)downG

Comment posted by GToon, today at 00:33GToon

00:33He’s put a smile on a lot of faces. Credit to him.264G

Comment posted by gazkitch, today at 00:34gazkitch

00:34Well done Gareth, let’s finish the job on Sunday! 👏👏243R

Comment posted by Robbie, today at 01:08Robbie

01:08Southgate 2 semi finals and now a final and all in the last three years
You have got to give it to him, he has got them playing well.
I think he is growing on people, after all he is giving us what we want.
Well done Gareth Southgate .211I

Comment posted by Imrebanana, today at 00:50Imrebanana

00:50Bemused and delighted at the salty celts in equal measure.

So many insecurities.224E

Reply posted by Ethereal73, today at 00:54Ethereal73

00:54to Imrebanana"Bemused and delighted at the salty celts in equal measure.So many insecurities."Ethereal73 replied: I am no Celt – English and ashamed tonight. Happy to be in a final BUT ashamed at how and at the commentary from so called TV professionals paid to be impartial.

How can we expect our children to be honest and fair when they de sick hypocrisy?1135More replies (16)downG

Comment posted by Gab, today at 00:38Gab

00:38Hope Southgate will get the credit he deserves now. Denmark were a serious team and England’s strength in depth has allowed them to reach the final rounds fresher than other teams. Denmark were a serious threat until their legs went.

I still wish the team had one more creative player in the starting line up, but one goal conceded in 6 games is hard to argue with.203I

Comment posted by I am the one, today at 00:35I am the one

00:35He seems a genuinely decent chap

Delightful he he achieved so much a a manager192A

Comment posted by ArmchairExpert, today at 01:12ArmchairExpert

01:12Massive credit to all of them, whatever the quality available year on year, the nation expects and tonight this young squad delivered. There is an X Factor and inner belief within this team and it has little to do with celebrity, you can tell that for this young squad, this will be their cup final and will mean the world to all of them and our nation

Whatever happens on Sunday we can all be proud161B

Comment posted by bailey5000, today at 00:37bailey5000

00:37Them last 5 minutes were the least stressful of the entire match, so weird in a good way. I mentally prepared myself for the usual heartbreak, but ended up pretty chill.172G

Comment posted by geoffinho, today at 00:40geoffinho

00:40Probably the best win in the world?186L

Reply posted by Lets Agree To Disagree, today at 00:43Lets Agree To Disagree

00:43to geoffinho"Probably the best win in the world?"Lets Agree To Disagree replied: Unfortunately no if we are all being honest. Luckiest win in the world, probably.1826More replies (9)downF

Comment posted by Foxes, today at 00:56Foxes

00:56Great manager, semi final and now a final, with this young squad he has pushed the boundaries. Let it continue, although getting past a great Italy side is the toughest test yet, which is expected for a final.132S

Comment posted by Skid_Diggler, today at 02:09Skid_Diggler

02:09Just want to say, I’m here for any of our Scottish friends if they need someone to talk to through this difficult time100N

Reply posted by NathanNTFC, today at 03:11NathanNTFC

03:11to Skid_Diggler"Just want to say, I’m here for any of our Scottish friends if they need someone to talk to through this difficult time"NathanNTFC replied: No Scottish people exist anymore. They were Danish and now they’re Italian!11J

Comment posted by Jay, today at 00:39Jay

00:39Well done & congratulations Gareth, the lads, & all the backroom staff 👏🏼

Plus big respect to Denmark, even without their top scorer Eriksen & being a nation of only 6million, they have much talent. An entertaining game.

Bring on Sunday, Ciao Italia 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🇮🇹144S

Reply posted by squarewindow, today at 01:27squarewindow

01:27to Jay"Well done & congratulations Gareth, the lads, & all the backroom staff 👏🏼Plus big respect to Denmark, even without their top scorer Eriksen & being a nation of only 6million, they have much talent. An entertaining game. Bring on Sunday, Ciao Italia 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿🇮🇹"squarewindow replied: If a nation’s population was key to their football quality then China and India would be the two best teams in world football. I’m sure it’s possible to find 11 half decent footballers out of 6 million people. If your nation’s population is 10 people or fewer then I’d concur that might be a problem.67More replies (2)downMore commentsBack to topunknown
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