Euro 2020: Italy beats Spain 4-2 via penalties to enter final

Midfielder Jorginho scored the winning penalty to seal the spot for the Azzurri in the summit clash.

Italian players celebrate after winning the semifinal against Spain on Tuesday.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Italy reached the Euro 2020 final after keeping its nerve from the penalty spot to edge Spain 4-2 in a shootout following a compelling 1-1 draw after extra time on Tuesday.

MATCH CENTRE

Jorginho coolly rolled the decisive kick past Spain keeper Unai Simon after Alvaro Morata had been thwarted by Gianluigi Donnarumma and Dani Olmo had blasted his effort over the bar.

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Spain's twin misses bailed out Manuel Locatelli, who had his strike saved by Simon with the first kick of the shootout, and Italy's substitutes and coaching staff poured on to the pitch to celebrate in front of their jubilant supporters behind the goal.

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Italy, which will play either England or Denmark in Sunday's final at Wembley in its first showpiece since being thrashed 4-0 by Spain in Euro 2012, is looking to win the tournament for the first time since 1968.

Roberto Mancini's side took the lead on the hour through a sensational curler from Federico Chiesa to complete a sweeping counter-attack which began with keeper Donnarumma catching a Spain cross and rolling the ball out.

Alvaro Morata celebrates after scoring Spain's opening goal. - AP

 

Morata levelled for Spain with 10 minutes left, calmly slotting into the bottom corner after bursting forward and exchanging a one-two with Olmo.

Spain looked more likely to find a winner in the remaining minutes and in extra time but could not manage a second shootout victory after prevailing against Switzerland in the quarterfinals.

Italy avenged its shootout defeat to Spain in the Euro 2008 quarterfinals and its resounding defeat in the Euro 2012 final, and completed a second straight European Championship victory over the Spaniards after its 2-0 win in the last 16 at Euro 2016.

Wembley's capacity was expanded to 60,000 and although coronavirus restrictions prevented fans from travelling abroad, the two countries' expatriate communities turned out to pack each end behind the goal and generate a scorching atmosphere, which heightened the sense of occasion between two titans of international football.

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