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Fans Are Slamming Gareth Southgate's Decision In Letting 19-Year-Old Bukayo Saka Take The Decisive Penalty

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Fans Are Slamming Gareth Southgate's Decision In Letting 19-Year-Old Bukayo Saka Take The Decisive Penalty

Fans are not best pleased with Gareth Southgate's decision to let Bukayo Saka take the decisive penalty vs Italy.

England and Italy could not be separated after a 1-1 draw in 120 minutes of action at Wembley and the Euro 2020 final went to penalties, where Italy won 4-2.

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Andrea Belotti and Jorginho saw efforts saved by Jordan Pickford but it was Azzurri goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma who proved to be the hero when he denied Arsenal winger Saka.

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Image: PA
Image: PA

Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho, who were both brought on late in extra time in preparation for penalties, missed from 12 yards.

And then the pressure penalty fell to Saka. Donnarumma guessed right and parried away his spot-kick to give Italy a sixth tournament victory.

Image: PA
Image: PA
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Saka, who had been a key asset for England in this tournament, was in floods of tears and had to be consoled by teammates and staff.

And though Southgate has been praised for creating a team fans could be proud of and guiding the nation to a first final in 55 years, he came in for criticism for letting Saka step up in such a high-pressure scenario.

Image: PA
Image: PA

Here's some of the strong reaction on social media:

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Southgate spent a considerable period of time comforting Saka, having suffered that same penalty heartache himself back in Euro '96.

"That's my decision to give him that penalty," Southgate said post-match.

"Totally my responsibility. We work through them in training, that's the order we came to."

Topics: Football, Euro 2020, Bukayo Saka, England, Italy

Josh Lawless
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