England Lose 4-2 On Penalties – After 0-0 Draw AET

England were beaten 4-2 on penalties after extra time,  after no goals had been scored over the 120 minutes.

Italy missed lots of chances tonight – with England strong in defense

And England basically defended and hung on for most of the 120 minutes,  if truth be told, after having a decent opening spell of 15 minutes when they attacked Italy.

Italy completed more than twice the passes that England completed, and out-shot England by more than a 3-1 ratio.

And it seemed that once the England defense had cleared the ball the midfield had trouble keeping possession, because of  some poor passing.

England held out for the 90 minutes,  and then held on in the face of  incessant Italy attacks through the 30 minutes of extra time, and they rarely threatened Italy.

Although England did have some decent  chances – Wayne Rooney in particular had a couple of very good chances in this game.

And so when it came to penalties England had absolutely nothing to lose, because there was no way they had deserved to win this game, based on what happened in those 120 minutes.

So why not just smash in the penalties?

Balotelli scored the first penalty for Italy, and then Steven Gerrard scored his,  but then Montolivo missed his penalty when he pulled the ball wide, and then Wayne Rooney scored with his penalty to put England 2-1 up,  with three penalties to take.

If England scored their next three penalties they were through to the semi-finals, but such is the fragile nature of it all,  that England missed their next two spot-kicks.

Ashley Young, who offered little throughout this game on the left wing, and kept giving the ball away, hit the bar and Ashley Cole had his shot saved down to his right by Buffon – but it was a poor attempt from the England left back.

On the other hand Pirlo, Nocerino and Diamnati all scored their penalties, and that gave Italy the victory by 4-2 in the shoot-out.

In 2006, in the World Cup in Germany, then England  manager Sven Eriksson had said yesterday that his big mistake was not taking a psychiatrist with him, to work with the England players on penalties, and maybe they should start thinking seriously about that.

It’s all in the mind with the England players, and at least for penalty shoot-outs they need to toughen up mentally. England have had seven penalty shoot-outs in major competitions, and they have won only one.

That was in 1996,  when England beat Spain 4-2 in the Euro 1996 Championships quarter-final shoot-out, after no goals had been scored after extra time.

But the England defense tonight was outstanding, with John Terry, Glen Johnson, Jolean Lescott and goalkeeper Joe Hart in particular having big games for England.

But as predicted by most neutral analysts, the midfield of Steven Gerrard and Scott Parker was completely  outplayed by the strong  Italian midfield, with Andrea Pirlo being given loots of time and space on the ball throughout the game, and why that was the case –  we have no idea.

If it’s any comfort for England fans, there’s no way we deserved to win this game, and we didn’t – and plaudits to the England defense for hanging on for so long, and keeping a clean sheet when under considerable pressure, which seemed unrelenting at times.

But Italy will now have to raise their game significantly from tonight’s display,  if they are to get past Germany in the semi-final on Thursday.

And they will have only four days rest after having had this very tough and tiring game, with extra time and penalties, and yet Germany will have had six days of rest – how did EUFA allow that one to happen.

Comments welcome.

32 comments so far

  • nickfish90

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:04 PM

    Comment #1

    Ashley young. Crap. The best team won though. Pirlo oozes class.

  • Shane

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Comment #2

    Carroll should have taken a pen… Banged in enough for us. But hey ho the best team went through.

  • rich_toonfan

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Comment #3

    Ashley young may as well have stayed on the bus.

    He hasn’t showed up in the tournament at all.

    Same for rooney, bar his goal he has barrely looked involved in games.

    I think he needs a few games away from the side to give him the hunger back and to show he isn’t an automatic pick.

    It works in other sports so why not football.

  • Big Pappa Cisse

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:06 PM

    Comment #4

    @ Nick

    you gotta have some balls to pull that one off like, if you score your a hero, if you miss your fool

  • rich_toonfan

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:07 PM

    Comment #5

    I think England, although poor with the ball, showed a lot of character and ability to defend.

    We aren’t the best by a long way but we fought during all the games and never lost a game, we were difficult to beat.

  • toonarmydownsouth

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #6

    Well what an absolute shower we were truly abysmal deserved to ho out congrats to italy they wanted it more and in all honesty should never of gone to pens and for me i hope ashley young nevers dons the three lions again not because he missed a pen but over the 4 games ive never seem such an unpassionate play represent there country

  • dmac

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:12 PM

    Comment #7

    As everyone else has said, the best team tonight won. Was a brave performance from England tonight and we gave it our all. Ashley young wasnt good enough for me.

  • papiss_on_your_parade

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:18 PM

    Comment #8

    Ashley young was atrocious.
    Am I the only person that thinks glen johnson is awful?

  • Belly

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:19 PM

    Comment #9


  • Belly

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:20 PM

    Comment #10

    @ Papiss on you.
    Glen Johnson is dreadful. Surely we must have better English players in that position???

  • toonking

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:22 PM

    Comment #11

    well yet again england have poor tournement and get knocked out as soon as the face a top class team.the main reason, probably because the squad is getting too old so beecome tired easy.
    well what i hope will happen now is the team we have for the olyimpics do very well. that way our manager may finally have the belief to begin using a new generation of players. the main ones i would keep in the world cup starting 11 from this lot are walcott carroll welbeck and possibly oxland chamberlin

  • joe

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:27 PM

    Comment #12

    Hope nobody flames me for what I’m about to say!

    I’m not English but I’ve always supported the England national team. But throughout the tournament I felt that England needed to lose to actually realise that the current standard of players they produce is not good enough. I really hope that they could learn a thing or two from Germany who revamped their whole youth system in the mid 90’s implementing a more technical based coaching, and learning to play instead of learning to win at youth level. They’re certainly reaping the rewards now. I just feel that if England went through to the semis, they would still feel as though their current system is good enough, which it most certainly is not. England have been outpassed and outmatched technically by all the teams that they have faced, France, Sweden, Ukraine, Italy. And while you can win tournaments by rugged defending and hard running (Chelsea, Greece) they need to admit that it is not enough and 9 times out of 10 the more technical team will come out on top.

  • Paps

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:33 PM

    Comment #13

    Roy and capello were too defensive as managers. england only look good wen we attack. harry may have won us this game

  • Toon1978

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    Comment #14

    England are s hite. Nothing more, nothing less. Our players are over rated and are hyped up so much we believe we can actually win a tournament. We are 20 years behind Spain, Germany, Brazil, Argentina and sadly Portugal.

  • Belly

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    Comment #15

    You are exactly right Joe. It will be years before we will produce players like Cabaye, Iniesta, Ozil etc. it worries me that in this country we celebrate players like Parker. Yeah he puts in 100% but is an embarrassment when facing the goal. This tournament highlights that Rooney is overrated, he needed to step up to the plate and didn’t. It was an extremely poor performance from England.

  • davis_toons

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:42 PM

    Comment #16

    Glen johnson played well. He created the moved almost scored a goal himself. (but buffon, lived up to his name)

    The team was being held back and tired out to defence deep, because of italy passing movement, passing into space, and the midfield just cant get the ball moving.

    With better techincial skills, the italian have an edge.
    England, didnt really make good use of its speedy players and fullback.

  • davis_toons

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    Comment #17

    Maybe England should be coach by Big Sam, bless with speedy players and strong typical english defenders.

  • joe

    Jun 24, 2012 at 11:53 PM

    Comment #18

    What England need is to realise that we don’t produce anywhere near the quality other teams have. Name me one player in the England squad who could ever control a game like Cabaye, Xavi, Sneijder, Pirlo.. etc. We just don’t produce enough technically and while Gerrard and co might sparkle against another English side with direct running, against teams that don’t give you the ball we’re practically defending for 90 mins.

    An entire revamp of the youth system is needed. Stop being so arrogant and saying we invented football, we did but the continent has perfected it. And hopefully we learn a thing or two from the Germans.

  • SupaToonKid

    Jun 25, 2012 at 12:10 AM

    Comment #19

    My Ratings out of 10 of the England players who featured in the Euros.

    Hart: 8/10 – Some great saves + a top lad; definitely in top 5 best keepers in the world.

    Johnson: 7/10 – How this lad is not a winger i don’t know, always proved a threat on the overlap with good crosses and cuts inside also defended better than i’ve ever seen him do before but still suspect at times.

    Terry: 6/10 – fairly solid but definitely not the CB he used to be as proven against players such as Ibrahimovic. Can’t help but feel Ferdinand would have been better.

    Lescott: 7/10 – had to cover for a number of Terry’s lapses and played fairly solidly at the back with not many mistakes also a threat in the opponents box.

    A. Cole: 7/10 – England’s Mr Consistant &in my opinion the best LB in the world wasn’t unbeleivable but provided consistant performances defensively & attackingly however that pen was a shocker.

    Milner: 4/10 – no wonder he sits on the bench at Citteh! Contributed nothing this tournament and missed an absolute sitter vs France. Can’t play wide anymore probably would’ve been more effective in a 4-3-3 playing alongside Parker & Stevie G in CM.

    Parker: 7/10 – always gets stuck in & tries his very best for the side & i love a player like that. Tough tackler with some great break ups of the play but sometimes a bit too reckless.

    Gerrard: 8/10 – A captains’s tournament. Proved he is still a world class performer with a diverse set of passes, good tackling and overall leadership. Great vision led to many England chances; some taken better than others.

    Young: 3/10 – his penatly summed up his Euros. Awful, poor, woeful Young as all of these plus more. Never ever posed an attacking threat. Just horrendous. England’s worse player (taking into account how good he can be)!

    Welbeck: 6/10 – difficult to mark Danny as he played well vs France & Sweden but awfully vs Ukraine & Italy. I was close to giving him a 5 but he showed some great commitment this tournament and i think he has the potential to be a top striker for England but he needs to find consistancy. Great goal vs Sweden & in my opinion was England’s best player vs France.

    Rooney: 5/10 – It would’ve been lower if he’d played more games. Wayne proved yet again that he cannot be a world class player as he failed to show the ability he produces at Man Utd on the International stage. The lad seems to tries hard but just lacks spark or confidence to create any magic for England + loses the ball far too much.

    Carroll: 6/10 – Despite being a Judas, Carroll did show signs of his former self here. I still think he’s overrated but you cannot deny he always causes defences problems with his height & strength also works hard but apart from that doesn’t offer too much else.

    Chamberlain: 6/10 – should have started ahead of Young he looked bright vs the French. Definitely a potential world class star for England.

    Walcott: 6/10 – great impact sub vs Sweden as his pace was unstoppable but i think he wasn’t used enough and probably should’ve started ahead of Milner as his pace would’ve caused problems.

    Defoe & Henderson: 5/10 – did not feature enough realky to get given a mark but did not really provide much so middle for diddle for both the lads.

    Hodgson: 7/10 – knew we weren’t going to do to well this tournament but made some good decisions i.e. starting Carroll vs Sweden & bringing Walcott on as an impact sub in the same game also for starting Welbeck vs France (many believed he’d have chosen Carroll or Defoe ahead of him) in addition he set down the basics and made England hard to beat so not a bad start by Roy. On a negative we still looked like a boring side most of the time & sone squad selections such as Downing & Kelly were bizzare as were omissions of Ferdinand & Richards etc.

  • SHGK81

    Jun 25, 2012 at 12:51 AM

    Comment #20

    Diamnati – “here comes the West Ham reject” Mark Lawrenson you are a prick!

  • Brutooon

    Jun 25, 2012 at 1:04 AM

    Comment #21

    1) There is no way England a semi-final team by using that Tactics

    2) England as usual got an EASY qualifying round and also an easy group (France, Ukraine and Sweden).

    France Game – lucky france started with malouda and evra thus the DRAW
    Sweden- nearly DRAW the match but lucky goal thus the WIN
    Ukraine- another LUCKY goal

    3) Henderson, Walcott and maybe milner are AVERAGE players. Germany,Portugal,Italy and Spain wont PICK this kind of player in their team

  • GeordieChris

    Jun 25, 2012 at 1:08 AM

    Comment #22

    Not sure what planet some people are on but I thought Glen Johnson had a cracking game tonight and has played well as have the whole back four all tournament.Andy Carroll was more of a threat than welbeck swell,should’ve started but to be honest we needed to convert a chance when we were on top in the first 20 mins.
    Wish we’d had Ryan Taylor ”over the wall”though!!

  • t00ntime

    Jun 25, 2012 at 1:21 AM

    Comment #23

    Carroll is cr4p and tonight he was again yes he won lots of balls… But he is aimless, he jumps to win the header but unless going for goal he doesnt seem to have a clue where its going!

    Also someone named walcot as an average player, this tornament was harsh on him and rooney and welbeck, 90% of the time (tonight) we launched the ball to welbeck/rooney and expected them
    Not to lose the ball…
    Rooney wasnt himself in this tornament but what do you expect? He hadnt played for over 5weeks…

    But back to the point, by the time walcott came on we were 100% defensive and never really gave him the ball… The only game we carried on attacking he had an assist and a goal! We need to keep playing defensive (thats our game now) BUT we need to keep the ball longer and when we have the ball attack as a team! Not let 3 people do it themselves

  • weg

    Jun 25, 2012 at 1:35 AM

    Comment #24

    I’m disappointed to go out of the tournament but not surprised in the slightest. After the debacle of a world cup 2 years ago, i knew that Capello had to start moving out the “old guard” and bring in the new generation – even if it meant the team struggling through the campaign for 2012. But that did not happen!
    The only time Glen Johnson is any good is when the team are forced to defend for long periods. As soon as he goes forward he gets caught out of position. There are at least three or four better english right backs. Young is a joke this tournament! He’s done absolutely nothing in the four games to deserve his place ahead of others. Our midfield players are too old! Gerrard, Parker, Lampard, Barry are all over 30, and excluding Parker, all are experienced at failing miserably in tournaments.
    We need midfielders in their early twenties immediately brought through so they can develop at international level. We need to keep faith with Rooney, Welbeck, Carroll, Sturridge, Frazer Campbell (and others). And discard the likes of Bent, Defoe & Crouch etc.
    My team for the next England match(assuming they’re all fit): Hart, Baines, Lescott, Cahill, Richards – Henderson, Wilshire, Walcott, Adam Johnson – Rooney, Carroll.
    Squad members: Ruddy, Buckland – Cole, Walker, Jagielka, S,Taylor – Guthrie?, Milner, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Young, Welbeck, Sturridge.

  • Brutooon

    Jun 25, 2012 at 2:16 AM

    Comment #25

    1) Why does henderson in the team? do u guys actually WATCH football?

    2) Walcott is OVERRATED. If walcott is german or spanish citizen, he will but put in a German or Spain D team !!!

    3) i question this before Euro 2012, why defoe over Sturridge? Why Kelly over Richard?

  • papiss-on-u

    Jun 25, 2012 at 5:27 AM

    Comment #26

    age is not a factor.quality is. Hw old is pirlo and he is in my opinion the best playmaker in the game.4 england i think t shld simply about changing the players’ mindsets, playin 4 ur country shld bring out the best in u.roy should also pick a certain group 4 a certain type of play.

  • Graeme

    Jun 25, 2012 at 8:14 AM

    Comment #27

    Hopefully England will now abandon the likes of Gerrard, Cole, Parker, Lampard and start some serious TEAM building.

    We were never going to win this tournament, we have zero chance in Brazil 2014 either. Its time to look at 2016 and 2018 and build and develop towards it. Our young crop of Up and Coming players – Carroll, Wallcott, Young etc, will be coming into their prime at 26 – 28 years old for the next Euro’s and World Cup.

    The planning and development for those Competitions should start TODAY, but has the FA got the gumption, the balls, the belief to get off their collective butts and do something positive to try and change the situation??

  • saxonfenken

    Jun 25, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    Comment #28

    It was embarrassing having to watch, You will never win tournaments with lightweight forwards. Young, Welbeck and Rooney were awful, And we have nobody in midfield who can play like Pirlo. As soon as Young stepped up to take the penalty my heart sank. I am surprised that a man of Roy’s experience allowed Young to play every minute of every game. He has been terrible nearly all of the3 second half of last season ( a good diver though)

  • Constanstine

    Jun 25, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    Comment #29

    We need players like Owen and Beckham. These two always play well for the national team. Welbeck Chamberlain A.Young is no where near class, they’re just sprinters, young and fit thats all. In fact, more than half of our squad are.

  • Owldman

    Jun 25, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #30

    SuperToonKid I dont think Gerrard had that good of a game.I dont even think he had a very good Euro 2012.If this man is called :World Class : what does that make Pirlo? on a different planet i think.When Mclarence was replaced we all thought that it would be a new start for England but what happened when Capello chose his first squad there they were the same players that got Mclarence the boot now we have Hodgson selecting the same players.It never changes.

  • Owldman

    Jun 25, 2012 at 3:08 PM

    Comment #31

    following on from my previous blog. Just watched the Hodgson Gerrard press interview. You would think these people were in denial as to how bad England were!Hodgson made a statement that we lots of good England players! well if we have they certainly werent at the Euros 2012 Gerrad then stated that we had improved! from what & when.we are worse than we were about 20 years ago.Our midfield is non existant.Parker the magic round about.Henderson one for the future.not in a hundred years Ashly Young .not internationl class perhaps Wiltshire if he gets back to his best or Chamberlan may make it but the rest no way

  • weg

    Jun 25, 2012 at 5:00 PM

    Comment #32

    For at least ten or twelve years, the same players have been picked when fit, and the secondary players have not been given enough games. I’ve always said, why play gerrard or lampard, or ashley cole, or rooney, or ferdinand, or terry etc for every friendly game? Sven did it, Brolley Wally did it, Capello did it too. Going into a tournament, we have, Baines, Lescott, Welbeck, Carroll, both sub keepers, Jones, Kelly, Jagielka, Oxlade-Chamberlain, Henderson – all with less than 10 caps i think! That’s half the squad!!!
    The players who have been in the tournaments and failed are basically guaranteed their places. That shouldn’t be the case! Other, younger options need to be played – to at least put pressure on these first teamers!
    We need to move on from Lampard, Barry, Ferdinand, Defoe etc, and give the 24 year olds a chance to step up and prove themselves. The whole squad idiology needs an upgrade.
    And an England B-team needs to be set up again to blood even more players! If there aren’t enough english player playing for top clubs, then they should be showcased in an England B-team! Here’s an idea: Whenever England has an international, set up a B-team international as well. We might unearth a few players who might not otherwise be thought of.


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