Euro 2020 FINAL: Is it coming home or going to Rome?

67YAZ

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I feel for the Danes. That was a bad PK call and an unlucky rebound.

But the final is a well deserved match up between two of the best sides in the tournament and should present us with lots of compelling storylines and tactical interplay. Let's hope the quality of the actual match meets the overall standard of his tournament so far.
 

Ale Xander

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Tale of the Tape:
antipasti: Italy
Main course: Italy
Dessert: Italy
Tea: England
Coffee: Italy
Wine: Italy
Beer: unsure
Aperitifs: Italy
Strong spirits: England
Weather and Landscapes: Italy
GDP/capita and employment rate: England
Clothing: Push
Footwear: Italy
Architecture and Art: Italy



GK: Italy
Defenders: Italy
Midfielders: push
Forwards: England

advantage: Italy
 
Last edited:

Tangled Up In Red

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Heart is with England, but (on an even betting line) cash with the Azzurri.

I think clothing and footwear should be a push.
 

coremiller

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With apologies to Nick Bakay:

Tale of the Tape:
antipasti: Italy
Main course: Italy
Dessert: Italy
Tea: England
Coffee: Italy
Wine: Italy
Beer: England (proximity to Ireland)
Aperitifs: Italy
Strong spirits: England (proximity to Scotland)
Weather and Landscapes: Italy
GDP/capita and employment rate: England
Clothing: Push
Footwear: Italy
Architecture and Art: Italy



GK: Italy
Defenders: Italy
Midfielders: push
Forwards: England

advantage: Italy
England surely doesn't get to benefit from its proximity to Ireland and Scotland if the Irish and Scots have any say about it.

England could probably win spirits on its own, based on gin. Italy's main spirit is grappa, which is awful.
 

dirtynine

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Hey Europe, It's The Final Countdown!

No special feelings for Italy, but Chiellini won me over with his goofy pre-PK routine yesterday. And unless they're playing like, Mexico circa 2008, I'd root for basically anyone over England.

In the battle of North End vs. Tory Row, I'll pulling for team blue in this one.
 

singaporesoxfan

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England surely doesn't get to benefit from its proximity to Ireland and Scotland if the Irish and Scots have any say about it.

England could probably win spirits on its own, based on gin. Italy's main spirit is grappa, which is awful.
England also wins beer on its own, even if
the Campaign for Real Ale types can be annoying
 

BaseballJones

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Tale of the Tape:
antipasti: Italy
Main course: Italy
Dessert: Italy
Tea: England
Coffee: Italy
Wine: Italy
Beer: unsure
Aperitifs: Italy
Strong spirits: England
Weather and Landscapes: Italy
GDP/capita and employment rate: England
Clothing: Push
Footwear: Italy
Architecture and Art: Italy



GK: Italy
Defenders: Italy
Midfielders: push
Forwards: England

advantage: Italy
Cars: Interesting battle between Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Aston-Martin, Lotus, Jaguar vs. Ferrari, Lamborghini, Alfa Romeo, Maserati. All depends on taste, I suppose.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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English beer is far better than Italian beer.

The Italian defenders are very strong, but don't sell the English short. They're not even bothering to play the starting left and right backs for the Champions League winner. Still only allowed one goal in the whole tournament.
 

OCST

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England surely doesn't get to benefit from its proximity to Ireland and Scotland if the Irish and Scots have any say about it.

England could probably win spirits on its own, based on gin. Italy's main spirit is grappa, which is awful.
Going to Italy to drink spirits is like going to New York to eat Olive Garden.
 

67YAZ

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Going to Italy to drink spirits is like going to New York to eat Olive Garden.
Why would you drink anything other than vino in Italy?

And why would you do anything but drink in England?
 

Section30

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I hope the German ref from the Italy/Spain game gets the final. He ignored the diving by both teams and as a result it was a much better game than I expected.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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I'm talking myself into England, despite a not-so-great performance against the Danes.

Italy's midfield will control the match. I think Rice and Phillips will get exposed quite a bit.

But England's defense - especially Maguire, Shaw, and Walker - has been exceptional all tournament and should be capable of holding Italy's relatively weak attack at bay, even if they spend a lot of time without the ball. And Italy will be there for the taking on the break or if the game opens up. As much as I respect Chiellini and Bonucci, I don't think they (plus Jorginho as the deepest lying midfielder) can handle the quartet of Sterling, Kane, Saka, and Mount (or Grealish if he comes into the side) if forced to defend in space and/or transition. There is a real athleticism mismatch there that will be tough for Italy to deal with.
 

pokey_reese

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I've honestly talked myself into both sides being able to win this game. Italy has at times, especially early on, looked like the crispest passers and most creative offensive team, though they definitely lacked that precision against Spain. England looked a little unsure of themselves offensively early on, but Kane's ability to feed perfect passes into the middle on counters has been amazing in the past few rounds, and the front four for England suddenly looks like a greater threat than their defense. This is honestly probably the best outcome I could have hoped for since there were 8 teams left, and maybe 16. It should be a fantastic game.
 

67YAZ

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Not sure I agree with this. Even if they didn't have their strongest game today, their tackling and athleticism make things difficult for most. We shall see.
I agree. I don't think there English back 4 have played that great - except for Shaw in attack, where he's kept his form from the club season. It's that England are pressing so well as a unit, and the Phillips-Rice tandem are disrupting everything that gets passed the attackers. Of all the clubs at this tournament, England are best equipped to replicate what Spain did in the first half yesterday....oh, and have a stone cold assassin in the middle of attack in Harry Kane.

Mancini found some smart adjustments at half time against Spain, and we'll have to see where Insigne starts in the final. Italy was much more effective breaking the press when Insigne moved into the middle, but that would leave Emerson having to manage Walker and Saka without with little assistance - a scary thought.
 

coremiller

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I actually think this sets up nicely for Italy. England are more predictable, their approach has been similar in every game. We know England will play cautiously. England are not set up to trouble Italy like Spain did with quick interchanges of passes in the midfield, and England will be reluctant to commit numbers forward in attack. I think England will really struggle to create much against Italy from open play unless they can get Sterling and Saka in behind. Their most dangerous tactic will be Kane dropping deep, where the closest midfielder will be Jorginho, who is not great at covering in that area, and Italy really struggled to handle Spain's false 9 tactics. But someone has to get the ball to Kane in those spots, and England lack the midfielders to play those passes that Spain have: Rice/Phillips/Mount are very different players from Busquets/Koke/Pedri.

Italy's approach is less clear. It will be interesting to see when and how high Italy press. England are vulnerable to a press as the Rice/Phillips DM duo aren't really passing/dribbling oriented players and England don't progress the ball as a team; the attacking players tend to stay high, which leads to a separation between the back six and the front four. This means passing outlets for the press to cover. England also don't have a defender who can play accurate long balls over the top from the back (although Stones is not bad). Denmark had some success at this in the first 55 minutes before they ran out of gas, and Italy are more talented and should be able to turn a press into chances more effectively. But a press could expose the Italian back line's lack of pace in transitions if England can manage to break it, and Italy don't have the fitness to sustain a press for 90 minutes.

Another question for Italy is how much they push their fullbacks forward. If Italy keep their FBs back this is likely to turn into a very dull game with lots of sterile possession among the backlines and the teams trading attempts to attack 4v6.

I think Italy have an advantage in that Mancini is a more creative and tactically flexible manager than Southgate. Southgate has been ok this tournament but he has favored a conservative approach that grinds teams down and he has been slow to make in-game adjustments. He has a lot of similarities to Deschamps, in that he plays for a clean sheet and trusts his talented attackers to come up with a goal somewhere so he can win 1-0. That works ok long as you don't actually go behind, but is a problem if you do. England needed a lucky break to get by a totally gassed Denmark without penalties. If Italy can get a lead, England may struggle to get back into the game.

The mental stuff is harder to judge. The pressure is certainly on England, playing at home with the weight of history. Don't know if that really matters. Most of the England players have played in a lot of big games before, although nothing quite like this.

Man for man, England have a stronger team and a much deeper squad; Italy are better at GK, CB, and maybe one of the CM spots but that's about it, and just about every attacking player in England's squad would start for Italy. But I don't trust Southgate to deploy that squad to maximize England's advantages. That means a 50/50ish match that's likely to be cagey and low-event at both ends with both teams struggling to create. 1-1 and decided on penalties would not surprise me.
 

Cellar-Door

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Tough choice here:
On the one hand, England's fanbase is obnoxious and deeply racist
on the other hand Italy's fanbase is obnoxious and deeply racist.....

Probably lean England because:
1. Only one with a player from my club on it
2. Seems like the players are less racist
 

Dummy Hoy

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I think Italy have an advantage in that Mancini is a more creative and tactically flexible manager than Southgate. Southgate has been ok this tournament but he has favored a conservative approach that grinds teams down and he has been slow to make in-game adjustments. He has a lot of similarities to Deschamps, in that he plays for a clean sheet and trusts his talented attackers to come up with a goal somewhere so he can win 1-0. That works ok long as you don't actually go behind, but is a problem if you do. England needed a lucky break to get by a totally gassed Denmark without penalties. If Italy can get a lead, England may struggle to get back into the game.
I think this is spot on. South Gate has done an excellent job with this England team, helping create the least detrimentally obnoxious squad in at least 30 years. Everyone on the same page, calm under pressure, not how you think of England for sure. Massive credit to him and his staff for the performance the last two tournaments (friendly fixtures a factor but they happen, just like dodgy pens). But Roberto Mancini is a world class manager and that could be a very big advantage for Italy…whether it trumps home field advantage and depth, we’ll find I out I guess.
 

Zososoxfan

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I actually think this sets up nicely for Italy. England are more predictable, their approach has been similar in every game. We know England will play cautiously. England are not set up to trouble Italy like Spain did with quick interchanges of passes in the midfield, and England will be reluctant to commit numbers forward in attack. I think England will really struggle to create much against Italy from open play unless they can get Sterling and Saka in behind. Their most dangerous tactic will be Kane dropping deep, where the closest midfielder will be Jorginho, who is not great at covering in that area, and Italy really struggled to handle Spain's false 9 tactics. But someone has to get the ball to Kane in those spots, and England lack the midfielders to play those passes that Spain have: Rice/Phillips/Mount are very different players from Busquets/Koke/Pedri.

Italy's approach is less clear. It will be interesting to see when and how high Italy press. England are vulnerable to a press as the Rice/Phillips DM duo aren't really passing/dribbling oriented players and England don't progress the ball as a team; the attacking players tend to stay high, which leads to a separation between the back six and the front four. This means passing outlets for the press to cover. England also don't have a defender who can play accurate long balls over the top from the back (although Stones is not bad). Denmark had some success at this in the first 55 minutes before they ran out of gas, and Italy are more talented and should be able to turn a press into chances more effectively. But a press could expose the Italian back line's lack of pace in transitions if England can manage to break it, and Italy don't have the fitness to sustain a press for 90 minutes.

Another question for Italy is how much they push their fullbacks forward. If Italy keep their FBs back this is likely to turn into a very dull game with lots of sterile possession among the backlines and the teams trading attempts to attack 4v6.

I think Italy have an advantage in that Mancini is a more creative and tactically flexible manager than Southgate. Southgate has been ok this tournament but he has favored a conservative approach that grinds teams down and he has been slow to make in-game adjustments. He has a lot of similarities to Deschamps, in that he plays for a clean sheet and trusts his talented attackers to come up with a goal somewhere so he can win 1-0. That works ok long as you don't actually go behind, but is a problem if you do. England needed a lucky break to get by a totally gassed Denmark without penalties. If Italy can get a lead, England may struggle to get back into the game.

The mental stuff is harder to judge. The pressure is certainly on England, playing at home with the weight of history. Don't know if that really matters. Most of the England players have played in a lot of big games before, although nothing quite like this.

Man for man, England have a stronger team and a much deeper squad; Italy are better at GK, CB, and maybe one of the CM spots but that's about it, and just about every attacking player in England's squad would start for Italy. But I don't trust Southgate to deploy that squad to maximize England's advantages. That means a 50/50ish match that's likely to be cagey and low-event at both ends with both teams struggling to create. 1-1 and decided on penalties would not surprise me.
Damn, this is spot on. England will concede possession and play a stretched out 4-6. The hope will be that Kane can unlock a quick counter, or one of the wingers can beat a man 1v1 and create some danger. It's really a shame Southgate is so conservative because if he pushed the FBs forward they could certainly initiate attacking moves and link up with Kane directly. Or shit, start Grealish to create more connectivity between the back 6 and front 3, or Foden to help with some central creativity but also be a threat on the wings. If this squad was competing in a domestic league, there's no way Southgate's XI would be the best XI for that side.

Italy will start conservatively as well with their FBs I assume, but will try to take more initiative as England will essentially defer except for some occasional pressing. If I had to attack England, I'd start by forgetting trying to attack Walker's flank directly. He's too strong and fast to do much against. Maybe try to pick on Stones a bit, so that Walker has to cheat inside to help him more. Maguire is much more defensively solid than Stones, and even though Shaw's limited physically he is a smart player. So I'd try to overload Shaw's side and get in behind him. Southgate will have the team setup deep to avoid this though, so after that I'd probably work between the lines centrally to try and pull the CBs out of position, even though it's not too likely to work with Maguire, Stones, Rice, and Phillips playing very well at the moment. So basically I think you have to work those spaces (i.e. between the lines in front of Shaw and Stones, and to a lesser extent Maguire), find some space to turn and run at defenders and take some shots from distance to get the defenders to step up more aggressively. Both of these teams have pretty good shooters from distance, but that seems to be more important to Italy's gameplan since they'll have more sophisticated attacking plans.
 

Doug Beerabelli

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Tough choice here:
On the one hand, England's fanbase is obnoxious and deeply racist
on the other hand Italy's fanbase is obnoxious and deeply racist.....

Probably lean England because:
1. Only one with a player from my club on it
2. Seems like the players are less racist
Is there any fanbase that is not obnoxious and deeply racist?
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Man for man, England have a stronger team and a much deeper squad; Italy are better at GK, CB, and maybe one of the CM spots but that's about it, and just about every attacking player in England's squad would start for Italy. But I don't trust Southgate to deploy that squad to maximize England's advantages. That means a 50/50ish match that's likely to be cagey and low-event at both ends with both teams struggling to create. 1-1 and decided on penalties would not surprise me.
That summary seems spot on to me but I actually think England should have the upper hand in this kind of cagey match. They're more dangerous on set pieces and their striker is more likely to convert the one big chance that falls to him.
 
also got in trouble for fans being disresptul during Dane national anthem
This has been happening for years if not decades, and it stinks and it sucks and it stinks - many fans have also been booing the players when they take a knee for Black Lives Matter. England's fans absolutely deserve censuring for this alone; the laser pointing is merely the icing on that particular toilet cake.
 

McBride11

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This has been happening for years if not decades, and it stinks and it sucks and it stinks - many fans have also been booing the players when they take a knee for Black Lives Matter. England's fans absolutely deserve censuring for this alone; the laser pointing is merely the icing on that particular toilet cake.
It probably was the direct cause of the juicy rebound... we should make it a dead ball.... ;)
 

Cellar-Door

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Is there any fanbase that is not obnoxious and deeply racist?
In Europe.... Portugal for the most part? Iceland I think? but yeah, it's a sliding scale. Italy and England aren't at the top (basically Russia, Turkey, everything east of Germany) but they aren't at the bottom either
 

Kliq

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This has been happening for years if not decades, and it stinks and it sucks and it stinks - many fans have also been booing the players when they take a knee for Black Lives Matter. England's fans absolutely deserve censuring for this alone; the laser pointing is merely the icing on that particular toilet cake.
To be fair, while there have been some knuckle-draggers booing, usually they get drowned out by cheering. You hear the boos first because the polite people are silent, but once they hear the booing they start cheering.
 

jose melendez

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In Europe.... Portugal for the most part? Iceland I think? but yeah, it's a sliding scale. Italy and England aren't at the top (basically Russia, Turkey, everything east of Germany) but they aren't at the bottom either
Germany's probably at the better end. Because of the country's history (and having uniquely horrible shit to atone for), they've reckoned with a lot more non-Holocaust stuff than other countries.

I really detest the English because of the press (which may not be worse than elsewhere, but I can read it), but I hate Italy because of the flopping. Tough call for me.
 

SocrManiac

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Can you review and assess the Shaw/Christensen foul that led to Damsgaard's free kick? (why is there no yt video for me to provide?!)
I’m not sure how that’s relevant. Jose condemned Italy for flopping to justify a case for England. If anything, it further proves my overarching point. I am sick and fucking tired of the Italians being held up as the standard for flopping. The entire farce needs to be evicted from the game, but it is not a uniquely Italian problem.
 

SocrManiac

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I mean, no, I've watched almost none of this tournament.
So, with the knowledge that England scored the goal that earned them their place in the final by blatantly and hilariously diving in the box to earn a penalty, would you change your stance?
 

jose melendez

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So, with the knowledge that England scored the goal that earned them their place in the final by blatantly and hilariously diving in the box to earn a penalty, would you change your stance?
Meh... It was a flop but there was at least contact, having just watched it. I'm still mad about Italy flopping against Nigeria in 1994.
 

biollante

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I hope the ref lets them play. Whoever scores first will win. Italy has looked good all tournament. England is at home and hasn't choked yet. I will say England. Starting Grealish is tantalizing, perhaps best to bring him on a little earlier than usual.
 

sodenj5

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Not sure how anyone outside of England is rooting for England.

They’ve had a wildly skewed travel schedule, got the easiest possible path to the finals in the tournament, and made it to the finals on an own goal and one of the most egregious dives you’ll ever see. Even then they needed Schmichael to deflect the ball directly back to Kane‘s foot to convert.

Forza Italia.
 

BaseballJones

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There's flopping, and then there's Italian flopping. Surely we can all detest flopping generally and still appreciate the unique brand of awful we too often see particularly from Italian players trying to buy fouls and cards from referees, no?
How does one quantify “Italian flopping”? Seems to me that this is a purely subjective thing that is riddled with bias.
 

Kliq

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The conversation around diving is one of the dumbest conversations in all of sports. Every player/club/country will at one time or another, go down with minimal contact because the game rewards players for exaggerating contact in the box. The discord on who is doing it at a more extreme level is obnoxious.

Dislike the Italian team because they laid on the ground for the final 10 minutes of the quarter-final.
 

singaporesoxfan

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There's flopping, and then there's Italian flopping. Surely we can all detest flopping generally and still appreciate the unique brand of awful we too often see particularly from Italian players trying to buy fouls and cards from referees, no?
This is where I stand - I understand the modern motivation to go down easily, and what Sterling didn't isn't particularly different from other players. What I find irritating about Italian flopping isn't that they go down easily on contact, it's that they often then go bugging the referee to penalize the opposing player. And as Kliq points out, the Italian timewasting for the last part of their quarter-final was egregious.

Anyway, England should have had a penalty from the Kane foul, and shouldn't have had that FK against them for Damsgaard's goal, so it generally evens out.
 

coremiller

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How does one quantify “Italian flopping”? Seems to me that this is a purely subjective thing that is riddled with bias.
You have to look not at the actual flopping, which is subject to huge random variance, but at expected flopping, or xF, which is much more predictive of future flopping.