England through to Euro 2020 final after extra-time win over Denmark
England have reached the European Championships final for the first time ever after defeating Denmark in extra time.
Harry Kane struck in the 104th minute after his penalty was saved to send England through after a dramatic night at Wembley.
Mikkel Damsgaard had earlier given Denmark the lead with a superb free-kick before Simon Kjaer was forced to turn the ball into his own net when defending a Bukayo Saka cross.
England will play Italy in the final on Sunday, after they beat Spain yesterday.
England started strongly and came close to scoring when Kane’s cross just missed Raheem Sterling when any touch would have probably resulted in a goal.
Sterling had another superb chance a few minutes later when he cut in from the left but he should have done better with the shot, which rolled tamely into the arms of Kasper Schmeichel.
Jordan Pickford’s first involvement of note nearly ended in disaster. He saved Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s shot but threw the ball against a Denmark shirt. It eventually fell to Martin Braithwaite but the Barcelona forward shot wide.
Denmark grew into the game from there and Damsgaard curled wide moments before the opening goal.
It was the Sampdoria forward who put Denmark ahead on the half-hour mark with a superb whipped free-kick over the wall which deceived Pickford and dipped under the crossbar.
Schmeichel kept Denmark ahead with one of the best saves of the tournament when Kane played in Sterling. The Manchester City man fired the ball towards goal from eight yards but Schmeichel somehow stretched out to make the save.
England were level with their next attack though, and it came through the tournament’s 11th own goal. Saka did brilliantly down the wing before firing a low ball across the six-yard box. Denmark captain Kjaer, under pressure from Sterling, could only rebound the ball into his own net.
Both teams had chances to win the game in the second half. Pickford did well to block a Damsgaard shot before punching away a Braithwaite cross.
At the other end, Schmeichel produced another world-class save to keep out Harry Maguire’s header.
England came close again when Sterling found Luke Shaw down the left whose cross was nearly turned into his own net by Hojbjerg.
The video assistant referee was finally called into action when England had a penalty appeal shortly before full time. Kane went down under a Christian Norgaard challenge but the VAR agreed with the referee’s decision not to give it.
Deep into stoppage time, Maguire should have done far better with a header that went straight into Schmeichel’s arms.
Schmeichel made yet another superb save at the start of extra time to keep out Kane’s low shot as England pushed for a winner.
Sterling then fired over after increased pressure in the penalty area.
England did finally get the breakthrough just before the end of the first period. Sterling collided with Joakim Maehle and Mathias Jensen and the video assistant referee gave the penalty. Kane struck a terrible penalty but the rebound fell straight to the Tottenham man to blast in from close range.
Brathwaite tested Pickford from the edge of the penalty area with seven minutes remaining but the England goalkeeper turned the ball behind.
Sterling could have put the game to bed in stoppage time but Schmeichel made another good save down low.
England kept the ball well in the closing stages to see the match out and confirm their place in the Euro 2020 final.