First penalty shootout at Euro 2012 shows up England’s appalling record
The statistics tell their own story of woe! Since losing to Germany in a World Cup semi-final in 1990, England have been eliminated on penalties in five more major tournaments, including the recent Euro 2012 quarter final against Italy.
The Italians won the shootout 4-2 at the Olympic Stadium in Kiev following a 0-0 draw after extra time.
For both teams this was a nightmare scenario since neither have good records when it comes down to penalty shootouts.
Italy created a stream of chances on the night and it was clear to all that they were determined to finish the contest in normal time. However, nobody told England's defence the game plan and man for man they were solid, particularily goalkeeper Joe Hart and central defender John Terry who were both outstanding.
In the end, it came down to penalties and this time England’s nerves got the better of them. After Andrea Pirlo coolly took his goal, Italy took full advantage of the situation when Ashley Young slammed his shot against the bar.
Now the pressure was most definitely on Ashley Cole, but he placed a weak effort well within the reach of the Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon.
England Captain Steven Gerrard and striker Wayne Rooney had both scored to give their team a 2-1 spot-kick advantage after Riccardo Montolivo had shot narrowly wide. But the Italians suddenly realised that they were in with a shout and masters of their destiny.
The rest as they say is history.
So the English penalty fiasco continues and 2012 can now be added to 1990, 1996, 1998, 2004 and 2006.
New English manager Roy Hodgson has just learned a difficult history lesson, one that will haunt him as he prepares for the next big battle ahead, the 2014 World Cup!
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England, Euro 2012, World Cup, Italy, Ashley Young, Ashley Cole, Gianluigi Buffon, Roy Hodgson, Joe Hart, John Terry, Andrea Pirlo, Steven Gerrard, Wayne Rooney, Riccardo Montolivo,