Thousands of football fans have taken to the streets of Rome, Naples, Milan and numerous other cities all across Italy on Sunday night, after their team upset England in a dramatic penalty shootout following a 1-1 deadlock and extra time at Wembley Stadium, London.
Huge crowds marched through Rome waving flags as cars honked non-stop, marking the historic victory.
The joy reverberated not only across the country but around the world, reaching as far as Australia. Hundreds of fans who watched the nail-biting Euro 2020 finals in Melbourne’s Italian precinct exploded in celebrations once their team claimed the victory.
Aiming for football to finally ‘come home’ after a 55-year absence since lifting the World Cup in 1966, England were forced to endure more heartache after suffering spot-kick defeat despite taking an early lead in a game which was short on quality but high on tension.
Luke Shaw’s goal had given England a dream start inside the opening two minutes, but Italy equalized through veteran defender Leonardo Bonucci in the second half.
The scores remained 1-1 after extra time as the contest went to penalties, with England trio Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka all missing their efforts with Gianluigi Donnarumma inspired in goal as Italy won the shootout 3-2.
England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford had himself saved efforts from Jorginho and Andrea Belotti, but Rashford struck the post before Donnarumma guessed correctly to thwart Sancho and teenager Saka to hand Italy a second-ever European title in front of a distraught Wembley.
In stark contrast, pumped-up Italy star Bonucci yelled “It’s coming to Rome! It’s coming to Rome!” into the camera as he spelled out the final destination of the trophy.