How Italy Won Euro 2020

The Azzurri's win comes at the end of a month in which they have wowed the continent
06:55, 12 Jul 2021

Italy are European champions after beating England on penalties at Wembley on Sunday, but how did they get the job done?

Here's a recap of their magnificent run over the past five weeks as the first ever pan-continental European Championship was won by the Azzurri.

Turkey hammered in Olimpico opener

Roberto Mancini and his side got the tournament off to a flier with a dominant 3-0 Group A win over Turkey in Rome.

Merih Demiral's own goal from a Domenico Berardi cross was to be the first of 11 OGs in total across the Euros' 51 games, and it was also the jumping-off point for the Azzurri.

Ciro Immobile then pounced on Ugurcan Cakir's parry to double the lead and Lorenzo Insigne mopped up after a Turkish error to make it 3-0 and get the championship off to a flying start.

Italy Justify Top Billing With Dominant Opening Performance
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Locatelli's one-man show leads Italy to last 16

Manuel Locatelli's two-goal show against Switzerland at the Olimpico led the Azzurri into the round of 16 with one game to spare.

The Sassuolo midfielder fed Berardi and then turned home the resulting cross to put his side ahead, and a low drive into the bottom corner shortly after half-time doubled his account to give Italy a comfortable lead.

And with two minutes remaining Immobile stepped up to sweep home his second goal of the tournament to give his side a second 3-0 win in their opening two games.

Locatelli Steals The Show As Italy Sail Into Last 16
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Much-changed Italy keep winning run going

With progression assured, Roberto Mancini took the opportunity to shuffle his pack but still did enough to lead the Azzurri to a 1-0 win over Wales in their final Group A fixture.

Matteo Pessina's delicate finish from a Marco Verratti free-kick shortly before the break was all that separated an Italy side showing eight changes from a Welsh outfit who had travelled over 3,000 kilometres from their previous fixture in Baku.

But the victory for Italy secured top spot and sent them through to a Wembley date with Austria in the round of 16.

Wales Win Proves Italy Have The Depth To Go Deep
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Azzurri overcome their toughest test yet

Italy rode their luck in their round-of-16 tie, as a disallowed Marko Arnautovic goal proved to be a big moment in the tournament.

The Austria attacker thought he'd given his side the lead midway through the second half amid a stale Italy performance, but after the goal had been disallowed by VAR a number of changes by Mancini helped to tilt the game back in the Azzurri's favour.

Substitutes Federico Chiesa and Matteo Pessina both came on and scored in extra-time as Italy finally found their feet, with Sasa Kalajdzic's late goal leaving the result in doubt right into the dying moments.

Chiesa Follows In Father's Footsteps To Send Italy Through
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World No.1s beaten

Roberto Martinez's Belgium posed the biggest threat yet to Italy, but a wonderful first-half performance saw the Azzurri send the world number-one ranked side packing at the quarter-final stage in Munich.

Leonardo Bonucci had seemingly given Italy the lead early in the proceedings but the goal was chalked off for a marginal offside, yet it wasn't long before Nicolo Barella put them ahead for real with a superb shot across Thibaut Courtois which nestled in the far corner of the net.

It was 2-0 shortly before half-time when Insigne sent a delightful curling effort beyond the reach of Courtois into the top corner, and despite a Romelu Lukaku penalty soon after it was Italy who headed for the final four.

Swashbuckling Italy Bounce Out Belgium
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Penalty success over Spain sends Italy to the final

Italy overcame old enemies Spain on penalties to reach the Euro 2020 final after a 1-1 draw in normal time. Chiesa's confident second-half finish had looked set to send the Azzurri straight through to the showpiece, but Alvaro Morata came off the bench to slot home from a one-two with Dani Olmo and take the game the distance.

After Locatelli had missed the first penalty it looked like it might not be the Azzurri's night, but Dani Olmo skied the next spot-kick and Morata later had his saved by Gianluigi Donnarumma, leaving Jorginho to slot home the winner.

Italy Go From Failures To Finalists
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Azzurri glory as England are beaten on penalties

It was to be another penalty success which would see Italy claim a second European title as they came from behind in the final against hosts England.

Luke Shaw's second-minute goal got the Three Lions off to a dream start, but Bonucci's second-half equaliser came during a spell of constant Azzurri pressure.

When it came to penalties the pendulum swung this way and that, with Andrea Belotti's saved effort seeming crucial until Marcus Rashford hit the post and Jadon Sancho had his stopped by Gianluigi Donnarumma. And after Jorginho's potential winner was kept out by Jordan Pickford, it was left to 'Gigio' to be the hero as he got down to save Bukayo Saka's crucial penalty and send the whole of Italy into ecstasy.

England Foiled On Penalties As Italy Become Champions Of Europe
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