England 1-1 Italy: Azzurri equalise in Euro 2020 final at Wembley

11 July 2021, 18:44 | Updated: 11 July 2021, 22:40

  • England take on Italy tonight in bid to be crowned champions of Europe
  • Luke Shaw scores early goal for England
  • Leonardo Bonucci equalised for Italy in the 67th minute
Luke Shaw gave England an early lead but Italy hit back after half time
Luke Shaw gave England an early lead but Italy hit back after half time. Picture: PA

By Joe Cook

England and Italy have drawn level at 1-1 in the Euro 2020 final as the Three Lions hope to win their first major international competition since 1966.

Fifty-five years after Bobby Moore captained England to their 1966 World Cup win at Wembley, captain Harry Kane is looking to write the team into the history books alongside the greats.

The side had a dream start as Luke Shaw scored just two minutes in to the match. But in the 67th minute Italy hit back with Leonardo Bonucci making it 1-1.

The match was even at the end of extra time and headed into a penalty shoot-out.

Inside an electric stadium, 60,000 fans are urging on the team, while tens of millions tune in from pubs and living rooms across the country for kick-off at 8pm.

England face their toughest competitor so far in Italy, who beat Spain and Belgium to book their place in the final.

England's starting line-up is: Pickford. Walker, Stones, Maguire, Trippier, Shaw, Phillips, Rice, Mount, Sterling, Kane.

Italy named the same starting XI as the one that beat Spain in the semi-final after extra-time.

READ MORE: England fans let off flares and gather in their thousands ahead of Euro 2020 final

Manager Gareth Southgate has opted to switch to the 3-4-2-1 used against Germany, calling up Athletico Madrid's Kieran Trippier.

As a result of the tactical switch, Arsenal's Bukayo Saka is dropped to the bench despite impressing in his three starts so far.

However, he could still make an appearance, with Southgate widely praised by football pundits for his substitution decisions so far this tournament.

The match is being officiated by Dutch referee Bjorn Kuipers, who has been the chief official in three Euro 2020 games so far.

Ominously for England he refereed their last competitive match against Italy at the 2014 World Cup, where England lost 2-1.

Among the dignitaries in the crowd at Wembley are the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, who earlier wished the team "the very best of luck", adding: "I can't really believe this is happening!".

In a message to the team ahead of the big game, the Queen added: "Mr. Gareth Southgate, OBE (Manager), 55 years ago I was fortunate to present the World Cup to Bobby Moore and saw what it meant to the players, management and support staff to reach and win the final of a major international football tournament.

"I want to send my congratulations and that of my family to you all on reaching the final of the European Championships, and send my good wishes for tomorrow with the hope that history will record not only your success but also the spirit, commitment and pride with which you have conducted yourselves. ELIZABETH R."

Ahead of the match thousands of fans descended on central London, with huge crowds forming outside Wembley, at Leicester Square and at Piccadilly Circus.

A huge policing operation is in place, with the Met urging people to stay calm no matter what the result.

Ahead of kickoff, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Laurence Taylor told LBC's Swarbrick on Sunday they expect thousands to descend on the streets.

"It's going to be challenging, but I think what people can expect to see is a very enhanced policing plan.

"We have got a lot of officers out, across London, not just in central London and Wembley.

"Of course, 55-years, it's something to celebrate regardless of the outcome and we would just really ask people to work with us and celebrate responsibly."