LONDON: Italy and England will lock horns today at Wembley Stadium in the final of the delayed 2020 European Championship.
Italy won the tournament in 1968 but have lost two finals in 2000 and 2012. For England, this will be the first appearance in a European Championship final.
Both teams have fought against each other for a total of 27 times. Italy came out on top in 10 of those while England managed 8 wins. However, where it matters the most, England could win just one out of 8 competitive matches against Italy. The three lions haven’t won a match since their win against the Azzurri in a World Cup qualifying match in 1978.
That is their only competitive win in 8 matches and since then have lost 4 and drawn 2. Their last defeat came at the group stage of 2014 World Cup in Brazil. Jordan Henderson and Raheem Sterling played for England in that defeat while Salvatore Sirigu, Giorgio Chiellini, Marco Verratti, and Ciro Immobile represented Italy. Two years prior to the 2014 World Cup, England also suffered a defeat against the Italians in the quarter-finals of Euro 2012, last Euro fixture between the two side.
However, if past was anything to go by, England would not have progressed from the semi-final as the record shows (Previous to Euro 2020 semi-final, England had managed just one semi-final win out of 5).
This is Italy’s 10th major final (six World Cups and four Euros), with only Germany (14) having played more among the European nations.
This will be England’s first appearance in a Euro final and their first in the final of a major tournament since winning the 1966 World Cup – the longest gap (55 years) between major finals (World Cup or Euros) for any European nation. Italy have never lost against England at a major tournament.