England lose to Italy in penalty shoot-out


England have been knocked out of the European Football Championship after losing a dramatic penalty shoot-out against Italy in Kiev.

The game saw the Italians dominate possession and they should have been out of site long before the final whistle after creating several excellent chances.

However stout English defence and some dreadful finishing meant that the game ended nil-nil after 90 minutes.

Extra time saw the Italians score what looked a late winner with only minutes to go, but the goal was correctly ruled out for offside, which replays showed was the correct decision.

The penalty shoot-out saw England take an early advantage when Montolivo shot wide with the Italian’s second penalty.  However England then missed two of their own, first Ashley Young hit the bar and then Ashley Cole saw his kick saved by Buffon.

When the Italians slotted home from their fifth spot kick it was all over for Roy Hodgson’s men.

England will be disappointed with the final result, however more concerning will be the performance that saw the Italians play the game almost entirely in the England half with England struggling to make any impact.

The match will be remembered for the very cool and very cheeky spot kick from Italy’s Andrea Pirlo.  Pirlo’s chip down the middle after Italy were one down in the shoot-out showed real nerve.

The Italians will now meet Germany in what promises to be an intriguing semi-final.