Chloe Kelly sends nation into raptures with extra-time Euros final winner for England
Beauty and Beast: the two goals that turned England into champions
Amidst extraordinary scenes of celebration at Wembley England won their first major trophy in heart-pounding style, as Chloe Kelly’s extra-time goal thwarted old rivals Germany in a dramatic and historic final, witnessed by a mesmerised, record-breaking crowd for a women’s football fixture in the UK.
After 50 years of trying since England's first international women's match and after three devastating, consecutive major semi-final defeats since 2015, it was Manchester City winger Kelly who firmly etched her name into English football folklore. She poked home from around three yards at a scrappy corner with just ten minutes of additional time remaining to clinch the nation’s first major senior international football honour of any kind since 1966.
And on a day of high drama, intense nerves and ultimately immeasurable joy as well as tears of happiness, 10 defiant minutes of outstanding game-management at the end of extra time saw out the victory to fire this group of 23 Lionesses into national sporting folklore forever.
Manchester United’s attacking midfielder Ella Toone had earlier dinked England in front in the second half of the normal 90 minutes with a moment of magic, expertly lifting the ball into the top corner from Keira Walsh’s perfect ball down the middle to send the 87,192-strong crowd wild. But Lina Magull’s near-post leveller gave Germany hope and forced the nerve-wrenching contest into an additional half hour.
Germany, the eight-time champions, arguably looked the better team for large parts of the contest but the host nation rode their luck and it was England’s substitutes who delivered the glory for the Lionesses on a day the sport will never forget.
And the historic attendance was the biggest ever at any Euros, men's or women’s, comfortably surpassing the men’s most-attended final of 1964 in Madrid, on an evening when the women’s game's rapid progress on and off the pitch was clear for all to see. Both the quality of the football and the groundbreaking attendances throughout these Euros have raised the bar.
These same two nations had met in the final 13 years ago but that was an era where the Germans were the sport's dominant force. They were easy 6-2 winners on that occasion. Thanks to the recent professionalisation of the sport in England, this was a wholly contrasting affair, and the Germans suffered a defeat in a major final for the very first time.
To England's fortune, Germany were dealt a seismic blow moments before kick-off when their captain and talismanic striker Alexandra Popp suffered a muscular injury during the warm-up and was ruled out of the game. The Wolfsburg striker had scored in all of Germany’s matches in their run to this Euros final and was the joint top-scorer in the competition going into Sunday’s action along with Beth Mead, who ultimately clinched the Golden Boot. That saw the honour go to an England player for the second Women's Euros in succession after Jodie Taylor won the scoring award in 2017.
Inevitably buoyed by the roar of the capacity crowd, England made their brightest start to a match so far this summer, having tended to be relatively slow starters, but Ellen White headed straight at Merle Frohms from the back post early on. The Lionesses were then grateful for a brave block from Lucy Bronze to keep out Sara Dabritz’s drive, before the hosts survived a goalmouth scramble which saw them have a lucky escape as replays appeared to show the ball strike captain Leah Williamson on the arm barely a yard from the goal-line.
The game was also becoming increasingly defined by heavy fouls, late challenges and trailing legs, with challenges flying in, and yellow cards being dished out at a surprisingly high frequency.
England were on the back foot at the start of the second half, and were relieved Magull laced wide from inside the area. However, depth on the bench has been integral for manager Sarina Wiegman in this campaign and the side was boosted once again by the introduction of Manchester United duo Alessia Russo and Toone on 55 minutes.
And it was 22-year-old Toone who brought delirium to the national stadium when she timed her deep run to perfection, stayed onside and calmly lifted the ball into the top corner past an on-rushing Frohms.
Suddenly, England were 28 minutes from glory, from sporting immortality, and the moment they had dreamed of for all of their lives, but two-time world champions Germany had other ideas. Magull fired a warning shot first, smacking against the post with an effort that Earps got a faint but vital glove to, but soon afterwards the 27-year-old Bayern Munich midfielder clinically beat Earps at the near post as she met Wassmuth's low cross first time.
The nail-biting intensified around the stands under the famous arch but 24-year-old Kelly, who was selected for this summer's squad after a lengthy fightback from an anterior cruciate ligament injury that had ruled her out of last summer's Olympics and most of last season, was in the right place at the right time to stamp her name in the annals of English sporting history.
Exactly 56 years and one day since Sir Geoff Hurt's hat-trick at this same venue, she poked in the scrappiest of winning goals after Bronze bundled Lauren Hemp's corner goal-wards, but not a single England fan would care about the manner by which the ball hit the net. It was only Kelly's second senior international goal but it will be replayed in montages for generations.
Within seconds of the final whistle sounding, 'Football's Coming Home' began playing from Wembley's sound system as the country's long, long wait for football glory finally ended. Even head coach Sarina Wiegman, usually the calmest of personalities, began to jig, as her team sprinted around the pitch with happiness. It was also a second consecutive title at the Euros for England's Dutch coach, who similarly led her home nation to their first trophy five years ago.
This was Wiegman’s 20th game in charge and her 18th win from those 20 fixtures without defeat, and she remains unbeaten as a manager in the Women's Euros. And for her team, as captain Leah Williamson had said in her pre-match press conference, this was not the end of a journey, it is just the beginning of one.
England 2 Germany 1: How match unfolded plus reaction
That concludes our live blog
All hail Sarina Wiegman and her team: they fought tooth and nail, they had moments of pure quality, they never gave up. At times you feared the Germans might just have too much running and nous, and England looked to have gassed in the first period of extra time. But once they scored, they saw the game out with real authority. I'm sure the celebrations will be epic and rightly so. To these women, and those who came before, congratulations, thank you, and well done. From me Alan Tyers and the rest of the Telegraph Sport team, thanks for reading. Goodnight.
William Kedjanyi: "Feels like a minor thing compared to everything else but the atmosphere around Wembley today was wonderful. Safe, buzzy, accessible & so much *fun* even before the game"
Not your average press conference
🎶 Football's coming home 🎶
The @Lionesses party will go on long into the night, and rightly so! #TelegraphFootball reporter @TomJGarry captures them interupting Wiegman's press conference #Lionesses pic.twitter.com/prYhmjGcs0
— Telegraph Football (@TeleFootball) July 31, 2022
There will be a parade in Trafalgar Square tomorrow (Monday). Here is how you can join in.
How to join in England's Euro 2022 victory parade in Trafalgar Square
Sir Geoff Hurst
"European Champions. Unbelievably proud."
Those who came before
Moya Dodd (former Matildas player turned soccer administrator in Australia): "Appreciation tweet for Hope Powell. Light years ahead of her time: as well as coaching the Lionesses to a women's Euro final, she assisted one of her players out of homelessness & another out of alcoholism. They told their stories years later. Wonderful to see her today!"
I mentioned the Germans
earlier. Apparently they've had a little tantrum. Here's the manager Martina Voss-Tecklenburg:
There was a situation at 0-0 where there was a clear handball in the box and VAR looked at it and didn’t award the penalty.
In such a big game, it’s difficult to cope with that. I’m asking, why didn’t the referee look at it? That would have given us more safety if we’d scored.
She added of the officials’ refusal to check again: “On this level and in the final of a European championship, this didn’t happen. Why didn’t they look at it? Sometimes it happens to others, it happened to us today, and if it had happened to England I wouldn’t be content either, it bothers me.
How it was won
Her Majesty The Queen: You have all set an example that will be an inspiration for girls and women today, and for future generations.
Boris Johnson: as below
Duke and Duchess of Cambridge: Sensational. An incredible win. The whole nation couldn't be prouder of you all. Wonderful to see history in the making tonight at Wembley, congratulations! W.
Harry Kane: Absolutely unreal scenes at Wembley!! Massive congrats to the amazing Lionesses!! Ella Toone take a bow for that finish too
Gary Lineker: Football is a simple game. 22 women chase a ball for 90 minutes and, at the end, England actually win. Congratulations Lionesses. Fabulous.
Ian Wright: I can’t put into words how much work has gone into this. I’m so proud, I can’t believe it!
Alex Scott: This is a dream. An absolute dream for every young girl who dreamed of playing football. Wow. This is incredible... I can’t... wooh.
Lord Sugar: Brilliant #lionesses
football Twitter account tweets: "We're so broken, but we're so damn proud of you, girls You gave it everything. That's all we can ask."
But we are hearing elsewhere that some of a German persuasion are crying foul about a handball not given at 0-0.
And now, reactions from some people who actually like football
John Nicholson: "My missus Dawn was prevented from playing football when at school because 'girls don't play football' Tonight she's in floods of tears. 'That was for all the bigoted sexist swearwords have held women back forever.' Right on."
Paul Kelso: "Medals for Alex Scott and Ian Wright too - insight, emotion, context, articulated the moment and the meaning perfectly."
Kate Burlaga: "Oh, my. Stigma and struggles and long trips to train, juggling jobs, playing for the love of the game. For all those who have gone before, this! Coaching, investment, encouragement, visibility… this is football - for all of us!"
Daniel Storey: "Sporting immortality is not established through your own performance, but the experience of those who started their journey because of you. That is the impact of this England team."
David Baddiel: "Home. In fact it’s come home. A sentence I thought I’d never write. I’ve gone. Thank you Lionesses."
Henna Khan-Hussain: "The post match interviews have been so fun and enjoyable to watch. Right, my first England sports team to support, I am all in!"
Congratulations from the PM
Boris Johnson posted this message on Twitter in the aftermath of England's triumph:
"Football has come home! A stunning victory by the Lionesses.
"Huge congratulations to Sarina, Leah and the whole team. Football pitches across the country will be filled as never before by girls and women inspired by your triumph."
A message from the Queen to the Lionesses
"My warmest congratulations, and those of my family, go to you all on winning the European Women’s Football Championships.
"It is a significant achievement for the entire team, including your support staff.
"The Championships and your performance in them have rightly won praise. However, your success goes far beyond the trophy you have so deservedly earned.
"You have all set an example that will be an inspiration for girls and women today, and for future generations.
"It is my hope that you will be as proud of the impact you have had on your sport as you are of the result today."
Some superb pics of the England celebrations
Absolute scenes at full time!
THE FULL-TIME SCENES 🤩pic.twitter.com/yrVbEmamPg
— Lionesses (@Lionesses) July 31, 2022
'I'm absolutely buzzing my head off'
It's fair to say England's first goalscorer Ella Toone is pretty pleased...
"It doesn't seem real. I'm absolutely buzzing my head off - it's the best day of my life.
"This is the best moment of my career, the best moment of my life."
Reaction from England veteran Jill Scott
"I can't believe it! It's such a privilege to be part of this incredible group of staff and players - and all the fans... what a day.
"The younger players have been absolutely fantastic and playing with freedom - I'm so grateful to be part of this.
"The celebrations are going to be massive. I don't think I'm going to sleep this week."
England vs Germany, Euro 2022 final player ratings: Mary Earps stars as substitutes steal the show again
'What dreams are made of'
How world reacted to England's Euro 2022 victory over Germany
Here come the England champions
Huge cheer for Jill Scott.
Leah Williamson gets a massive hug from the Duke of Cambridge - and the trophy to boot. She takes it over to her colleagues and they lift it. Amazing, joyful emotional scenes. The best team won the tournament, and they are showing every sign of being able to celebrate in fitting style. Congratulations.
The awards and honours are presented
Germany’s Oberdorf wins Young Player of the Tournament.
Golden Boot goes to Beth Mead, who doubles up with the Player of the Tournament award.
The German players go up for their silver medals, Prince William doing the honours.
"It’s unbelievable, I don’t even remember what you asked me! Oh my god. We really want to win, we want to be better every single day. We agreed on a couple of things about behaviour, it wasn’t just words it was lived.
“We won 2-1. We are champions. I don’t have any secrets. I’m really open. I don’t think I realise what is going on.”
Jonas Eidevall, Arsenal manager on the BBC
"England were a team clear on their roles. They have been coming back. They have been playing teams with more or less possession. You could see the energy Chloe Kelly was bringing. She was encouraging the crowd."
Reactions from the web
Paul Hayward: "The great ache in English sport is over: 56 years without a trophy for a senior England football team. As in 1966, an extra-time win over Germany/West Germany at Wembley by a hugely admirable team."
Ed Cumming: "Glorious proof of what you can achieve when you sack Phil Neville."
Gary Lineker: "Football is a simple game. 22 women chase a ball for 90 minutes and, at the end, England actually win. Congratulations Lionesses. Fabulous."
Casey Stoney: "European champions!!! Just let that sink in! Crying with so much pride right now. Thank you Lionesses, you’ve changed the game forever."
Chris Kamara: "Unbelievable Jeff. The Lionesses are the European Champions"
The BBC have re-captured Chloe Kelly
"Oh my God, it's amazing, thank you every single person who supported us, this is unreal. This is what dreams are made of. As a young girl watching women's football, it's unbelievable.
Thank you to everyone who played a part in my rehab. These guys are special, the manager is special and what a special group staff. All my family, my mum, my brothers, my sisters, this is amazing."
Reaction from Ian Wright
"Look at this team and everything they've gone through. I can't put into words. Women's football is getting exactly what they deserve. I can't believe it, I'm still a bit shocked by it."
🏆 ENGLAND ARE #WEURO2022 CHAMPIONS!!!🏆
The #Lionesses have done it!#ENG 2-1 #GER https://t.co/FgK2aUMR5U pic.twitter.com/xfdVEJokuW
— Telegraph Women’s Sport (@WomensSport) July 31, 2022
Comes over to do the post-match interview and breaks it off to join in a crowd rendition of Sweet Caroline!
Full time: England 2 Germany 1
England have done it. They have had to fight with everything they had there, it was an epic battle and the German players look absolutely spent, drained. They played their part in a hugely entertaining final.
England have given us two moments to treasure: that first goal was an absolute beat. Having been pegged back, they held their nerve and then Chloe Kelly has seized the moment with a goal - and a celebration - that will be replayed forever.
120 mins: England 2 Germany 1
120 minutes are up. England have a freekick down by the German corner. They play it canny. They have a corner.
Camera finds Wiegman on the touchline. She allows herself a little exhalation, trying to release some of the tension. Otherwise she is like a rock.
119 mins: England 2 Germany 1
Parris is coming on for England.
England have been magnificent since the goal. Germany have not had a sniff.
117 mins: England 2 Germany 1
One of the biggest cheers of the night as Huth miskicks the ball out, handing England a few previous seconds.
116 mins: England 2 Germany 1
England figuring that attack is the best form of defence. They keep the ball down in the corner. They eat up some time and now they attach - Russo with a nice bit of play and a fierce shot. German keeper has to tip it over.
113 mins: England 2 Germany 1
But the Germans will not lie down. Here they come now, Gwinn powering into the area, and denied at the last. Corner. Cleared.
GOAL! England 2 Germany 1 (Kelly 111)
Scramble. Bundle. Kelly has the ball in the net. She has stabbed the ball home. It's a mess in there, Kelly swings a foot at the ball, fails to connect, gets another go. And manages to scuff it home.
She whips off her shirt, she runs away in delirium, waving the shirt above her head a la Brandi Chastain.
I see you @Chloe_Kelly98 well done. Enjoy the free rounds of pints and dinners for the rest of your life from all of England. Cheers!
— Brandi Chastain (@brandichastain) July 31, 2022
109 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Scott gallumphs down the right flank and wins a throw in, Here's Kelly with the ball down by the corner flag. She wins the corner, and whips the crowd up again.
108 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Very cool save from the German keeper, electing to volley a long shot clear with her right foot.
Jill Scott leading the England battle.
107 mins: England 1 Germany 1
England come out looking the stronger. Both sides look like they are running through treacle now. Germany cannot get a toehold.
106 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Ready for another 15 minutes? Surely not pens?
Half time in extra time: England 1 Germany 1
A great battle, not a lot of football to speak of but you cannot fault the passion or the determination.
104 mins: England 1 Germany 1
England haven't really put anything together in this first period of extra time. Neither side able to play it. But plenty of argy bargy! Lohmann and Scott get into it.
102 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Bronze has clattered her opponent there! Luke Edwards: "This has been one of the most physical, some would say dirtiest, games I've seen in women's football. There has been a rather nasty undercurrent out on the pitch, with elbows and studs left in."
100 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Russo has fouled Oberdorf. Booked. Ball played in and cleared. Some work for VAR.
99 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Run from Hendrich, feeds Anyomi, but the communication lets Germany down.
98 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Gaps do seem to be appearing. England full of heart, chasing everything, but it is Germany who are playing the ball around.
96 mins: England 1 Germany 1
It's a goalmouth scramble in the England box, heartstopping stuff, eventually England get it clear.
Are Germany finishing a bit stronger? Are some of England's looking a bit leggy?
95 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Huth surges onto the ball, good covering from Bright. Corner.
94 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Tom Garry writes: "England have not yet won on penalties in a major women's international competition, losing both of the two previous shootouts that they've been involved in by a 4-3 scoreline. The first was against Sweden in the 1984 final's second leg at Kenilworth Road, and the second and most recent was in the quarter-finals of the 2011 World Cup in France. We haven't had a shootout in this summer's Euros yet..."
93 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Kelly gets down to the corner flag, wins a corner and whips up the crowd.
The corner comes in, Bronze/Bright get in each others way trying to hit a dipping ball from the edge of the box.
92 mins: England 1 Germany 1
A midfield battle so far. Walsh skips away from a couple of challenges but then gives the ball away.
91 mins: England 1 Germany 1
It's the Germans who kick off. Surprisingly, they have subbed off the goalscorer Magull.
"The game is too stretched, and that is in favour of the Germans. England keep winning the ball but they keep giving it back."
End of normal time: England 1 Germany 1
England were 20 minutes or so away, but the Germans were not to be denied. They've scored in normal time in each of their previous eight finals.
90+ mins: England 1 Germany 1
Hemp brings down Magull. Germany have a chance to launch it into the area... it is cleared.
It's going to be extra time.
90+ mins: England 1 Germany 1
Injury time. England taking their time with this freekick, which is eventually aimed at Bronze. Cleared. Germany try to break but run out of road.
90 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Hendrich is stretching, she has to try and close Russo down. Canny from Russo. She has won a freekick on the edge of the box.
88 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Bronze has a bit of time to measure out a cross and that's superbly punched clear by the German keeper.
86 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Commitment from both sets of players is exemplary. Tackles still flying in.
German sub Anyomi fouls Walsh.
Hegering, who has been a rock, clears.
85 mins: England 1 Germany 1
Daly comes off. Alex Greenwood comes on. Stanway comes off. The veteran Jill Scott comes on.
84 mins: England 1 Germany 1
England have got the ball. They are managing to control the situation a little better. Russo receives the ball, spins, and has caught Hendrich with an elbow.
82 mins: England 1 Germany 1
England got a little defensive, an old failing, and sat back and they've paid the price. Nearly gets worse yet when Wassmuth gets across her marker at the front post.
GOAL! England 1 Germany 1 (Magull 79)
Oh no. Oh England. The Germans have probably deserved it, and it has come from Magull, who has been probably their best player. Wassmuth got down the flank, she pulled it back for Magull, who gave Earps no chance.
74 mins: England 1 Germany 0
Germany with all the pressure. A vicious whipped cross and that's an inch or two away from being turned home by Lohmann, who has just come on as a sub for Dabritz. Brilliant cross from Gwinn.
Tom Garry: "87,192. That's the largest ever crowd for a women's football match in the UK. And the biggest ever attendance at any Euros, men's or women's."
73 mins: England 1 Germany 0
Attendance confirmed as 87, 192. Luke Edwards writes: "England are 1-0 in the final of a major tournament with less than half an hour to go and some idiot started a Mexican wave! They should be banned in English football stadiums,"
72 mins: England 1 Germany 0
This time, it's Kelly who gratefully gets the ball clear. Hope England don't get too deep / too pinned back.
71 mins: England 1 Germany 0
Germany take that corner short, and it's eventually cleared behind by Bright. Another corner.
70 mins: England 1 Germany 0
What have Germany got? 20 minutes left. They are piling it on. Magull powers forward, hits a ball in, it's behind for a corner.
69 mins: England 1 Germany 0
Russo nearly gets free in the box but her control lets her down.
64 mins: England 1 Germany 0
Oh so close. Magull drives forward and into the inside right channel, she slaps a shot that beats Earps but it hits the angle between post and bar and rebounds. Germany cannot apply the finish: Lea Schuller should have done better but hit it straight her follow-up shot straight at Mary Earps
62 mins: England 1 Germany 0
A sub has done the business once again for England, who now look to press home their advantage.
GOAL! England 1 Germany 0 (Toone 61)
That is fantastic! Oh that is a brilliant finish. It's been a niggly, spiteful game low on quality and long on fouling. But it has been lit up by a finish of the highest quality. England play it long from Walsh, Toone runs on to the ball. The keeper comes out.... and she chips her. It's a moment of pure beauty and brilliance, what a lovely finish and England - England! - have the lead in the European Championship Final.
59 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Mead with a THUNDEROUS tackle on Hegering. Sore for the German, and worse for the England player.
58 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Russo has had a bit of a nibble at Hendrich. It's good niggly stuff.
57 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Now a ball is played through. Schulle races onto it, and leaves her foot in. Catches Earps. Who seems hurt.
56 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Oberdorf has clattered Stanway.
55 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Ellen White is coming off. Fran Kirby is coming off.
Toone and Russo are the women coming on.
Tom Garry: "The noise from the stands when Alessia Russo's entrance was announced over the sound system was pretty deafening. Her stock has soared since Tuesday's unforgettable backheel."
53 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Stanway, booked, has given away another free. She must be on her last warning....
Germany play the ball forward.
Molly McElwee: "The German fans behind Earps's goal are getting louder as their team keep the pressure up while England struggle to play out from the back.
Change desperately needed, so Alessia Russo and Ella Toone's introduction will hopefully lift England who are in a bit of a hole at the moment.
52 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Daly and Schuller tangle, both having words with each other. Ref steps in and has a word in turn with both of them.
50 mins: England 0 Germany 0
England have not managed to get their ball-players onto the ball/into the action at all so far this half. It is all Germany. Looks like England's gaffer is going to make a change.
49 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Brilliant play from Germany. Nice dummy from Rauch and it falls kindly for Magull, who has time to control it - and poke just wide.
48 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Poor communication from Bright and Bronze and Wassmuth is clear down the left! Runs at the goal, cuts inside, but luckily for England she has fired that straight at Mary Earps.
47 mins: England 0 Germany 0
It is indeed the Germans who make the positive start here, getting down the right and crossing. Earps gathers.
Slightly nervy from Earps in a clearance here though. Germany keep the pressure on. Rauch allowed a bit more time than ideal to get her cross in from the left here. Earps yells at her colleagues.
46 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Brand is coming off for Germany and Wassmuth is coming on. Brand was committed but didn't offer all that much in attack. I reckon the Germans will come heavy at the restart.
Here we go then. Tight game.
Tom Garry: "England have improved in the second halves of matches in these Euros, so for them to be level at the break gives them an encouraging platform to build on because we know England have one of the most dangerous substitutes benches in the global women's game right now."
A word from our friends in Germany
The opening half hour in a picture 🙃
WIR #IMTEAM 🇩🇪 #hungriGER #WEURO2022 #ENGGER 0-0 pic.twitter.com/L90pYOhz10
— Germany (@DFB_Team_EN) July 31, 2022
"The referee has been terrible."
The BBC are showing Stanway's harsh booking - Coach Wiegman went tonto at that and ran down to berate the fourth official.
Half time analysis
Tom Garry: "Referee Kateryna Monzul is not a popular figure among the near 90,000 fans in the stands at Wembley at the moment. It's turning into a very feisty final and we're seeing a regular break in the play for free-kicks, and there doesn't appear to be much consistency in terms of which of those fouls are deemed worthy of a yellow card."
England's best chance came when Beth Mead got down the right and pulled it back for Ellen White. She shot over.
The Germans also went close when they stuck it in der mixer and England had to hack it off the line.
Overall, physical rather than technical or aesthetic as a spectacle. Anybody's game.
Half time: England 0 Germany 0
Just one minute added and that'll do it for the first half.
44 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Oberdorf, who has been putting it about, fouls Kirby. Stanway and Brand also clash. It's physical, no-quarter stuff.
42 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Deep ball into the German box again and just a shame that Kirby isn't an inch or two taller or she would have headed that in at the back post.
40 mins: England 0 Germany 0
These Germans are certainly getting stuck in. An up-and-under into their box sees White have them under pressure but another big tackle saves the day. Hegering on Bronze.
Germany deal well with the corner.
39 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Rauch, the dirty blighter, is rightly in the referee's book for a shove on Beth Mead.
38 mins: England 0 Germany 0
That is England's best bit of football. Beth Mead is played through down the right, she has options in the middle and pulls it back for Ellen White. She hits it well enough but is leaning back and has put that over. England's best chance.
36 mins: England 0 Germany 0
This is even steven. Germany have played some nice stuff. England arguably looking a bit more incisive when they come forward. It's a physical battle rather than a technical one at the moment.
34 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Glenn Moore, a women's football export once of this parish, tweets: "33 gone, still 0-0 though Germany - who have settled after the shock of Popp's withdrawal, nearly ahead after a scramble. Warm and very muggy here, it's going to be hard for both teams to keep up the tempo."
33 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Mary Earps with a brave gather under the high ball, pressure from - I think - Schüller and the England number one gets bashed up there. She is ok.
29 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Mead has Rauch at her back, feels a very slight contact and goes down. The game not flowing, lots of fouls, both sides defending well. Albeit the Germans with a deep line. Gary Lineker: "Nothing much in it thus far but Germany’s propensity to defend so incredibly deep from set plays could just be their undoing."
26 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Now the ball is lofted into the Germany box and there is a shout for handball against Schüller. Nah.
25 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Däbritz pushes Stanway in the back, the latter wants a yellow for her assailant but no.
24 mins: England 0 Germany 0
And from the ensuing corner, it is an absolute bundle! Proper goalmouth scramble. A save from Earps, not cleared, then a clearance off the line from Williamson! A VAR check for, I think, a handball shout in the melee but nothing doing.
24 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Germany with an excellent passing move, intricate stuff and Brand gets to the byline. Bronze turns the low cross behind for a corner.
23 mins: England 0 Germany 0
So how do we assess this after the first quarter? Well contested, some tackled coming in. Half chances you'd say rather than clear openings.
21 mins: England 0 Germany 0
First booking of the match goes to Stanway for a nothing tackle. Bit weird.
Popp update: a muscle problem.
18 mins: England 0 Germany 0
And yet another corner, England piling on the pressure and the Germans, you have to say, rock solid in defence so far.
Here's Paul Hayward on Twitter: "A quicker pitch would have helped England, who shift the ball so well. This is one of those lush, slow Wembley surfaces.
17 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Another corner. Bronze with a header. Well saved.
16 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Kirby lofts it back in with an up-and-under. Decent from the German keeper under pressure from White.
15 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Mead goes down and England have a freekick. Swung in, behind for a corner.
Poor Alex Popp really upset on the sideline
13 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Some spicy tackles flying in! Both Kirby and Stanway have had whacks. Ref seems to be taking quite a softly-softly approach so far.
11 mins: England 0 Germany 0
England's defence backs off and here is Däbritz again, allowed too much time and space to get her shot away.
9 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Danger here though! Däbritz drives forward and hits a fine shot, Bronze with an important headed block.
7 mins: England 0 Germany 0
If you had a criticism of England so far in this tournament, it would be that they have started slow. Not so tonight.
Tom Garry: "This is by far and away the best start to a match that England have made to this tournament."
5 mins: England 0 Germany 0
England have an early corner. Half cleared. It's lofted back in, and the German keeper has made a meal of that simple catch, nearly dropping it over the line under pressure from White!
4 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Oberdorf with what looked like a foul on Daly, to me. Ref sees it other way.
2 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Powerful run from Hemp. England look energised and up for it. They must be absolutely cock-a-hoop to see Popp, Germany's main goal threat out.
Daly finds Kirby, she crosses for White who gets a header on target but Frohms catches.
1 mins: England 0 Germany 0
Massive setback for the Germans to be missing their talismanic goalscorer. We kick off.
have had a huge late setback: Alex Popp is not fit to start. She has injured herself in the warm up.
A fly-over by some RAF planes before kick off. Seems a bit insensitive.
Here's how England will play
Now of course
God Save The Queen. Sung with some gusto by the England players.
The magnificent German
anthem first, one of the top, top anthems IMHO.
Here come the teams
Tremendous atmosphere, wonderful. National anthem time.
Sorry to report
that Becky's trousers appear to have fallen off.
The pre-match hoopla
turns to a performance by (checks notes) Becky Hill.
Paul Hayward writes
"A thought for Steph Houghton, an England captain with 121 caps who missed out on Euro 2022 through injury. And her husband, Stephen Darby, who has motor neurone disease."
Good luck to @leahcwilliamson and the @Lionesses tonight. Boy how you have grown and done so well. I am super proud of you for the person, player, leader and role model you have become. You are an inspiration to us all. Go enjoy it tonight. We are super proud of you @Arsenal pic.twitter.com/sgbJBHBabc
— Kelly Smith MBE OLY (@kelly_smith10) July 31, 2022
Millie Bright is the subject
of a nice preview piece. She's got one of England's most important jobs today: marking the formidable Alex Popp.
20 minutes til kick off
Where is your money?
The last time England were in
the final of this, 2009, they were pumped by Germany. "We got to the final but we knew they were beyond us. I was training in my local park," says Alex Scott.
Eight European Titles for the Germans.
There's that sweet little kid who was cheering at match the other day
Invited on by Gabby.
got the semi-final score spot on, predicting that England would beat Sweden 4-0. "It is important that we stop the supply from out wide to Popp," she says. "If we can do that, we have got this game in the bag."
"Today, I am going 3-1 to England," she says.
"England are out for their warm-up on the Wembley grass now, with kick-off just 45 minutes away. The stands are about half full at the moment as the England supporters continue to make their way to their seats. You can almost feel the anticipation in the air, as well as the nerves, but there's also a party feel to it. The fans have just been treated to 'Rockin' all over the world' on the PA," writes Tom Garry.
"With 45 minutes to go here at Wembley, it is difficult not to be struck by the contrast between this spectacle and the hellscape of the men's Euros final last summer. At this stage of the preamble 385 days ago, hooligans were being prised off traffic lights on Wembley Way, while ticketless, cocaine-fuelled hordes surged past overwhelmed stewards and climbed all over fans in the disabled section. This time? Not a trace of trouble, and German supporters mingling unsegregated with the hosts. It is a belated manifestation of what reaching a major final should feel like."
Natalie Portman has just a to-camera
video package about women's football!
She is one of the co-owners of Angel City Football Club, along with Eva Longoria, Mia Hamm, Serena Williams and somebody who I haven't heard of called Becky G. Apologies for that, Becky.
Angel FC play in America's National Women's Soccer League
BBC pre-match analysis
Takes in the German press, how well organised and efficient they are. TV as familiar as an old jumper.
How the North of England became the football factory behind Lionesses' roar
Wiegman says: "Very important that we start well. It is going to be a very tight game. I think they will play a lot more physical. We know everything. Our plan is really clear. I'm not sure what my final words will be to the players yet."
"When you see how much these players give to the fans, thanking them for coming, it means so much."
6 - England have named the same starting XI in all six matches at EURO 2022, becoming the first team in European Championship history (men’s and women’s) to name the same starting XI in every game from the group stages to the final. Unity. #WEURO22 pic.twitter.com/PmjCkbxoTY
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) July 31, 2022
"I got a little bit of sleep. It is incredible to be here with this group. This group is ready, we have been on an incredible journey and we are growing."
Alex Scott on the BBC
"There is no fear factor with Germany any more - we have beaten them recently."
Tom Garry with more on the team news
"England are keeping with the formula that has got them this far, but will also know they have a plethora of impactful substitutes available on the bench including Alessia Russo, Ella Toone and Alex Greenwood. Germany, as expected, are without just one player: Bayern Munich winger Klara Buhl has been suffering with Covid."
"King getting a little bit emotional. The journey these girls have been on, this is the dream. It is hard not to feel emotional, and very nervous."
The BBC coverage begins with
Joy Crookes performing her song Feet Don't Fail Me Now; and there's a montage of the great and the good wishing England's players well. Ed Sheeran, Richard E Grant, David Beckham, Prince William.
Team news! via Tom Garry
Breaking: England are unchanged for a sixth straight match at these Euros. That's no surprise because consistency has been one of Sarina Wiegman's mantras. Here's their starting XI:
England (4-2-3-1): Earps; Bronze, Bright, Williamson, Daly; Stanway, Walsh; Mead, Kirby, Hemp; White
Germany are also unchanged from their semi-final win over France:
Germany (4-3-3): Frohms; Gwinn, Hendrich, Hegering, Rauch; Magull, Oberdorf, Dabritz; Huth, Popp, Brand
Gary Lineker has tweeted
"I am wishing the Lionesses all the very best for the final. You’ve been utterly superb in this tournament. One more win and you’ll have footballing immortality. Go make history."
England players acclimatising
Molly McElwee writes: "England players have just had a little wander around the pitch 90 minutes ahead of kick off. Looks like they're just taking in the size of this stadium, which England haven't played in since last October.
The crowd is filtering in from Wembley Way slowly, and those already in situ have given them a loud welcome."
And here are England's players
Tom G: "Now with exactly 90 minutes to kick-off, the England players walk out onto the Wembley turf, wearing their grey team tracksuits. They're taking selfies, chatting amongst themselves and soaking up the applause of the fans who have taken their seats early.
Here's Tom Garry: some people are on the pitch
"The Germany players are currently out on the pitch down in front of us, taking in their surroundings. They look very relaxed. Meanwhile, just arriving outside the ground is England's team bus, flanked by flag-waving fans.
I loved this piece
on the England team by their friends, former team-mates, etc.
Our heroic Lionesses - by the people who know them best
Interesting life by the sounds of it. Has a degree in architecture and town planning. Has reffed the women's World Cup Final. Also done men's top flight games in her native country, first woman so to do. England men's fans may recall her becoming the first woman to take charge of an England men’s game (October 2021) - for their World Cup qualifier against Andorra.
Fled her native Kharkiv this year for the obvious reasons. Travelled by car with her two sisters and their three boys through Moldova, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic before arriving in Germany. "It was stressful and difficult," she told Uefa's website. "When we left Ukraine, we didn't have any ideas what the next step was for us."
Via help from Uefa she has moved to Italy and is living in Turin.
Tonight's match officials
Let's hope these don't become too much of a focus!
Tom Garry writes.
Here are tonight's match officials, and what a moment for Ukrainian referee Kateryna Monzul. And it should be said, her appointment isn't just a token gesture of solidarity amid the war back in her home country. Ffor many years now, she has been among the top-ranked female referees in Europe:
Referee – Kateryna Monzul (Ukraine)
Assistant Referee 1 – Maryna Striletska (Ukraine)
Assistant Referee 2 – Paulina Baranowska (Poland)
Fourth Official - Stephanie Frappart (France)
VAR – Paolo Valeri (ITA)
Assistant VAR – Maurizio Mariani (Italy)
Assistant VAR 2 – Pol Van Boekel (Netherlands)
Here's Molly McElwee reporting from the ground.
Much more wholesome scenes on Wembley Way than last year's men's final - one artist even finding a quiet spot to take in the scenes by the stadium.
A Wembley security staff member told me he was happy to just not have a flare being thrown his way today!
A sea of red and white at Wembley
Tyers here, looking forward to bringing you build up of this exciting occasion. Without further ado, here is our women's football guru Tom Garry:
The sea of red and white outside Wembley is like nothing I have ever seen before in the women's game, and that's no surprise because tonight's attendance of around 87,500 will set a new record for any Euros, men's or women's.
There were thousands of people milling around outside even at 10am and 11am but now the atmosphere has stepped up several notches completely. And the mood is so remarkably contrasting compared to last year's men's final, with such a safe, happy feel to the vibes outside this stadium.
Bands are playing music, families are enjoying packed lunches and everywhere you look there are red-and-white shirts and flags.
There will be a flyover of RAF typhoons over Wembley moments before kick-off and we gather the aircrafts will be piloted and crewed entirely by women.
Luke Edwards, meanwhile, has been soaking up the atmosphere on his way into the ground.
On my journey from South-West London to North London on public transport I have seen England shirts absolutely everywhere, plenty of them with the names of our Lionesses on them.
I’ve been saying since the start of the tournament that we needed a breakthrough moment to achieve real crossover success into the mainstream. We’ve already had that - I think that probably came with the semi-final win over Sweden and Alessia Russo’s back heel - but now we need to win the tournament. Nothing will have more impact than that.
As for the match itself, the Germans, who beat France 2-1 in the semi-finals, have won the title an incredible eight times - including a 6-2 win over England in the 2009 decider - and are out to steal Wembley from underneath the English, according to Martina Voss-Tecklenburg, who said yesterday: "At the beginning Wembley will be English and I hope it will belong to us at the end."