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England reach Euros final after beating Netherlands


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Ollie Watkins struck a stunning injury-time winner as England beat the Netherlands 2-1 on Wednesday to set up a Euro 2024 final showdown with star studded Spain in Berlin.

It was an incredible finish to an evening that began badly for England, as Xavi Simons gave the Netherlands an early lead in the semi-final in Dortmund.

However, England were soon level through a Harry Kane penalty following a contentions VAR call by German referee Felix Zwayer, and the match looked set to drift towards extra time until Watkins struck.

Three Lions boss Gareth Southgate will receive much of the praise after the winning goal was created and scored by two substitutes he brought on with around 10 minutes left to play.

On for Harry Kane, Watkins received a pass from fellow substitute Cole Palmer with his back to goal in the first minute of stoppage time, turned and fired low into the far corner to leave the Netherlands completely stunned.

It has rarely been a convincing campaign from Gareth Southgate’s England side, but they are through to their second consecutive European Championship final as they dream of finally winning a first major trophy since 1966.

Asked about his decision to take off Kane at such a crucial moment, Southgate told a news conference after the match, “Harry took quite a big knock when he won the penalty so we weren’t sure how long he would be able to play on for.

“Him and Phil (Foden) were playing well, but we were losing a little bit of energy… Certainly we weren’t taking Phil off because of his performance, but we have got good players on the bench with freshness we felt could help us.

“And you know, we wanted to make that gamble in normal time rather than wait until extra time.”

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