Bayern Munich legend Lothar Matthaus has insisted that England and their fans “deserve the trauma” of their penalty shootout defeat to Italy in the Euro 2020 final.
Gareth Southgate’s men took the lead against Italy at Wembley on Sunday through Luke Shaw’s opener inside the first two minutes.
However, Roberto Mancini’s impressive Italy side bounced back in the second half after Leonardo Bonucci scored the all-important equaliser.
Harry Maguire and Harry Kane both scored in the shootout, but Jadon Sancho, Bukayo Saka and Marcus Rashford all failed to convert from their respective spot-kicks.
England’s hopes of lifting their first major silverware since 1966 were crushed, while Italy captured the Euro 2020 trophy and extended their superb unbeaten run to 34 matches.
Now, Matthaus has rubbed salt in the wounds of the Three Lions and their supporters by calling out their controversies during this summer’s Euros.
“English fans were hostile to the little girl in the Germany jersey,” he wrote for German newspaper Bild.
“They were whistling the opposing national anthems. Denmark’s goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel was blinded with a laser during a penalty that Raheem Sterling dived to get in the semi-finals.
“Add to that the racist hostility towards their own players after the final. Dear Englishmen, that was unsportsmanlike behaviour that we did not know from you and never want to see again.
“So, sorry for the players but you deserve the trauma after the final was lost on penalties.”
England fans were criticised for mocking a young fan after she was spotted crying in the Three Lions’ sensational 2-0 win over Germany in the last 16.
A JustGiving campaign raised over a staggering £30,000 for the Germany fan, but she has since requested that all of the funds are donated to UNICEF.
Raheem Sterling was accused of diving after he went down under a challenge from Joakim Maehle, with Kane converting from the subsequent penalty to seal a 2-1 win for England over Denmark in the semi-finals.
However, England were hit with further controversy after a laser pointer was shone at Kasper Schmeichel’s face ahead of the penalty at Wembley.
UEFA handed down a £26,000 fine to the Football Association for several offences committed, including the laser pointer incident.
England manager Southgate also issued a public appeal for fans not to boo Italy’s national anthem after supporters were blasted for booing the national anthems of Germany and Denmark.
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