England Win Euro 2022 Final Against Germany As The Lionesses Bring It Home
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The Lionesses ended England's 56 year wait for a major trophy by claiming a first tournament win since 1966.
Moreover, they dealt Germany their first ever loss in a European Championship final, showing a composed performance in bouncing back after a German equaliser to claim victory.
As was to be expected from a major final, the first half was a cagey affair, despite yielding a few significant chances.
Whilst England controlled much of the ball, the Germans the showed resilience and composure that is to be expected of a team with their pedigree.
A six-yard-box scramble had England worried, but goalkeeper Mary Earps eventually recovered the ball.
At the other end, there were chances for Ellen White and Lucy Bronze, as well as a penalty shout for each side, although neither would have truly been warranted.
A feisty content between two well-matched teams was exactly what the competition organisers would have wanted, and exactly how the state of affairs stood at the break.
So it remained for a large portion of the second half, before Wembley Stadium was sent into pandemonium just after the hour mark.
England broke out of defence, before a lofted pass bamboozled the Germany defence, leaving Ella Toone to deftly lift over German goalkeeper Merle Frohms to give England the lead.
In truth, it was slightly against the run of play, but in a game of tight margins, a precious goal was always worth taking.
Toone’s goal left Germany facing the prospect of a first loss in a European Championships final.
Almost immediately, Germany nearly found an equaliser, though Earps was at her best to push Lina Magull’s strike onto the upright.
The game became a bit more open following the goal, but one of the loudest cheers of the second half was still reserved for the announcement of a crowd of 87,192 supporters in Wembley, the highest attendance at a Euros final of any kind.
Despite that moment of joyful release, these were nervy times for England as the clock seemed to drag every second out to the maximum.
Those nerves eventually told when Lina Magull equalised for Germany as the game approached the final 10 minutes of normal time.
A defensive lapse from England let Germans in behind, the move progressed to a ball across the box that Magull was on hand to stab home at the front post.
Back to square one for the Lionesses, conceding only their second goal of the tournament.
As extra time loomed, England tried to press forward to find a winner, whilst Germany remained a threat.
However, the two teams were inseparable in normal time, requiring at least an extra 30 minutes to decide a result.
More of the same followed into extra-time, with both teams appearing visibly fatigued.
Chances were hardly flowing, although the game was periodically frantic.
The game was starting to fizzle out, with little of note to excite during the first half of extra-time.
However, there were incredible scenes again when Germany failed to deal with a corner, leaving Chloe Kelly two attempts to poke home from close range, restoring England’s lead.
It was her first international goal, and one that could come to define her career and England’s tournament.
Nine minutes remained for England to hang on for glory.
In the end, they looked the more likely to extend their lead, as Alessia Russo had a shot saved by Frohm.
The Lionesses’ battle was then against the clock, waiting for the seconds to tick down for a famous victory.
In the end, they did.
The final whistle sparked jubilant scenes in the stadium and on the pitch, with England’s women writing their name into footballing history.