|Daniele De Rossi, Andrea Pirlo and Ignazio Abate after Italy lost the Euro 2012 final to Spain.|
The build-up to the end of May sawChelseafans across England look for any comparison between the 2012 season – where they beat Bayern Munich in the Champions League final – and the season just gone, as they were left crossing their fingers and toes ahead of the 2021 Champions League showpiece against Manchester City.
Thanks toThomas Tuchel‘s brilliance,Chelseawere able to outshine the Premier League champions and bring the European Cup back to west London. Now, as the whole of England looks towards Sunday, July 11, we ask ourselves: can history repeat itself once more?
Along withManchester Citywinning the Premier League andChelsealifting the Champions League, 2012 also sawItalylose theEuropean Championshipfinal, as they fell to a 4-0 defeat against Spain in Kyiv, Ukraine.
These comparisons carried severalChelseafans to the final in Porto and nowEnglandfans are looking to that same ray of hope againstRoberto Mancini‘s dangerousItalyside.
TheAzzurrihave been the standout performers so far atEuro 2020, while they are currently on an unbeaten streak of 33 games. En route to the finalItalyhave knocked out the likes of Belgium, the No.1 ranked team in the world, and Spain, withLorenzo Insignebeing a shining light for the team.
It’s still advantage England
But with the home ground advantage,Englandgo into this game as the slight betting favourites.
Having conceded just one goal in their six games so far,Gareth Southgate‘s side have shown that they are a team to get behind atEuro 2020. TheThree Lionsalso boast impressive options in attack, with the likes ofHarry Kane,Raheem Sterlingand the creativeJack GrealishandPhil Foden, amongst others.
AfterEnglandproduced their first knockout win over Germany in an international competition since 1966, fans immediately looked towards Sunday’s Wembley final with only one phrase in mind: it’s coming home.