‘Football’s Coming Home’ motivated Italy to beat England in Euros final, says Leonardo Bonucci

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Leonardo Bonucci says England fans embracing their anthem Three Lions only motivated Italy to make sure football “came to Rome” instead of “coming home.”

The song, by Lightning Seeds front man Ian Broudie and featuring comedians Frank Skinner and David Baddiel, has been played relentlessly during the tournament and climbed to No4 in the charts last week — 25 years after first being released during Euro 96.

Italy ensured there will be more years of hurt for England fans though as they held their nerve to win a penalty shootout after the sides drew 1-1 at Wembley last night.

Did the song spur Italy on? “Absolutely,” Bonucci said. “We heard it day in day out ever since Wednesday night, since the Denmark game, that the cup would be coming home to London.

“Sorry for them, but actually the cup will be taking a nice flight to Rome and that way Italians all over the world can savour this competition. It is for everyone, we said from day one, it was for them and for us.”

Bonucci’s veteran defensive partner Giorgio Chiellini kept up an Italian tradition by sleeping with the European Championship trophy last night, after leading his country to glory at Wembley.

Roberto Mancini and his squad flew home after the match, and captain Chiellini celebrated their triumph by sticking to the tradition started by former Italy skipper Fabio Cannavaro in 2006, when Italy won the World Cup.

Chiellini posted a picture on Twitter in the early hours of this morning showing that he had followed suit. “Following the tradition of a great master @fabiocannavaro,” he wrote.

Before that, he posted a picture of himself sat on the team bus with the trophy and a caption of “It’s coming Rome!!!”

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Italy made a nightmare start last night after going behind inside two minutes to a Luke Shaw thunderbolt.

They recovered, though, and equalised when Bonucci prodded the ball home from a corner in the 67th minute. Italy went on to win on penalties, with Marcus Rashford hitting a post and Gianluigi Donnarumma denying Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka.

“This victory really proves that once you go all the way, all you need to do is try and give yourself a push to get back to the top,” said Bonucci.

“You need to want it more than anything else. This is a renaissance for Italian football and I am sure this squad and this great coach will make plenty of headlines going forward.”

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