SportsCaptain Harry Kane's Extra Time Goal Sends England To First Final In...

Captain Harry Kane’s Extra Time Goal Sends England To First Final In 55 Years

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July 08, (THEWILL) – It needed the twin factors of extra time and good fortune but after half a century plus five years, England have qualified for the final of a major tournament as team captain Harry Kane’s rebound was enough to book their place alongside Italy with a 2-1 semi-final victory over Denmark.

It is a victory that further cements Gareth Southgate’s philosophy for the side and justifies the confidence reposed on the national team manager by the English Football Association so far.

England scaled through by the scruff of their neck in the early periods of the semi-finals fixture because Denmark were the better side. The Danes capitalised on their ascendancy in that period by opening the scoring via a brilliant free kick by Mikel Damsgaard after half an hour.

Glo

The stunning goal was the first time the defense of the Three Lions was breached since the competition began with the compact Southgate defense holding tight even in pre-tournament friendlies going as far back as March since they last conceded.

However, it took less than 10 minutes before England were back on level terms. Arsenal’s Bukayo Saka sprinted into the Danish area down the right flank at pace and delivered a perfect cross into the middle. To cut out the incursion of dangerman Raheem Sterling, the Danish captain, Simon Kjaer, slid in defensively only to divert the cross into his own net from close range.

The goal saw the two sides go into the interval level at 1-1 and in the tense second half that followed, England came more into their own. The Three Lions could have edged ahead of the Danes but Danish and Leicester City goalkeeper Kasper Schmiechel kept a Harry Maguire header out with a splendid and strong one-handed save.

As no further goals came in the second half and with neither side able to get that differentiating score, the game went into extra time. The English were controlling the match in the first period of extra-time when Sterling’s charge into the box from the right flank was interrupted by a foul challenge from Joakim Maehle.

After consultation with the video assistant referee (VAR), which backed referee Danny Makkelie penalty decision, Harry Kane stepped up and took the kick. Schmeichel guessed right and stopped the ball but, unfortunately, the rebound fell to the Tottenham Hotspur man, who happily slammed home to send his team into the final.

That was all the goals that came as extra time whistle went, sending the packed fans in the Wembley Stadium into wild celebrations and cheers. England had finally reached a major final after 55 years and will face Italy in the final on Sunday, June 11.

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