Ouch. It was more penalty pain for England at the Euro 2020 final.
We have been here before. Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle at Italia ’90. Gareth Southgate famously blew it at Euro ’96.
Paul Ince and David Batty missed in ’98, and more agony followed as England exited tournaments on penalties in 2004, 2006, and 2012.
Now add Euro 2020 to the list.
It hurts, and Manchester United fans know that agony too well. David de Gea missed the deciding penalty at the Europa League final at the end of May.
Marcus Rashford hit the post with his penalty and then incoming signing Jadon Sancho saw his shot saved. England had one more chance to stay alive, but Bukayo Saka’s penalty was saved too.
All three players need support
Our focus is naturally more so inclined towards Rashford and Sancho but the same quite obviously applies to Saka too.
All three players need support and do not deserves to be vilified and mocked as a result of this.
The players are heartbroken and looked distressed at missing their penalties.
It takes guts to get out there and take them, especially in a final. Clearly a different outcome would have been desired.
What is terrible is that United’s players will get the blame more than others would have. Rashford and Sancho are high profile stars and we have seen before with David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo how the press and rival fans turn on Red Devils’ stars after tournaments.
So United supporters need to look after our own and show Rashford and Sancho real backing and defend them at all costs. Don’t pile it on.
With supporters returning to Old Trafford next season, both players will feel the love. There will be jeers away from home, but the United fans will outweigh that with positivity.
Did Southgate put duo in unfair spot?
There is a case to argue that England boss Gareth Southgate put both players in an unfair position.
Both came on with just five minutes to go, and had such little tournament action, it was a big demand on them to step up and score in the shootout.
Obviously there would have been huge faith both would be able to, and we saw Juan Mata and Alex Telles come on in similar circumstances and scored in Gdansk. Normally you would expect Sancho and Rashford to score, but there is extra pressure with England.
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