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Italy midfielder Marco Verratti says he would not have given the penalty which helped England beat Denmark in their Euro 2020 semi-final on Wednesday night.
The Three Lions will face Verratti’s Italy side in Sunday’s final at Wembley and the PSG star says he is dreaming of claiming the title in England’s back yard.
Gareth Southgate’s men reached their first major tournament final since 1966 with a 2-1 extra-time victory over Denmark and though they were the better side there was a touch of controversy about their winner.
England were awarded what looked a soft penalty as Raheem Sterling drove into the box and went down between two players, with Harry Kane eventually converting on the rebound after Kasper Schmeichel saved his spot-kick.
“It was a generous penalty, I wouldn’t have given it,” Verratti said. “It was an important goal, they won the game, but let’s say it’s a generous penalty.”
Italy have played at Wembley twice already in the competition and needed more than 90 minutes to get the job done on both occasions, beating Austria in extra-time in the last-16 and then edging Spain on penalties in Tuesday’s semi-final.
England, meanwhile, have played all but one of their games - the 4-0 thumping of Ukraine - at Wembley, making Euro 2020 feel something of a home tournament, and Verratti is determined to spoil the party this weekend.
“They deserve to be in this final in a stadium they know well,” he said. “It would be a dream to be able to win it like this in their stadium.
“We are used to playing in stadiums like this, it will give us strength too. We are not afraid. We are happy that they won, now we are both playing in a historic final.”