England Secure Euro 2024 Final Spot with Dramatic Win Over Netherlands

England booked their spot in the Euro 2024 final with a thrilling 2-1 win over the Netherlands at the Westfalenstadion on Wednesday night. Substitute Ollie Watkins scored the winner in injury time to send the Three Lions to their second consecutive European Championship final.

The match got off to a lively start, with Xavi Simons opening the scoring for the Dutch just six minutes in. However, England responded quickly, with Harry Kane equalizing from the penalty spot after a controversial handball decision.

The second half was a tense affair, with both teams creating chances but struggling to find the winner. England rode their luck at times, with the Netherlands ramping up the pressure. But it was substitutes Cole Palmer and Ollie Watkins who combined to make the difference, with Watkins smashing the ball across the face of goal and into the back of the net.

Player Ratings

  • GK – Jordan Pickford – 7/10: The one player in generation Southgate that has faced a chorus of doubt. This is a narrative no more, and although he could have got a stronger hand on the opener, he made a fine save to keep van Dijk out just after the hour mark.
  • RWB – Bukayo Saka – 6.5/10: Those inswinging balls have been a major source of chances for England this summer; it’s just a shame nobody ever seems to be on the end of them. Nevertheless, he was his side’s ‘real’ bright spark, contrary to popular belief, and his mazey runs were a key plus point.
  • ST – Memphis Depay – 5/10: He linked up play nicely to give Malen a chance, but was subbed off in the 35th minute through injury.
  • LW – Cody Gakpo – 6.5/10: Atypically quiet in the first-half. Improved after the break, driving at the defence and causing Pickford a lot of problems with his tantalising crosses into Weghorst.
  • Sub – Joey Veerman – 6/10: Did very little to change the midfield outlay. But his curling free-kick from far out almost saw the Netherlands take the lead again when it met van Dijk.
  • Sub – Wout Weghorst – 6/10: It’s a real surprise Wout Weghorst doesn’t start for his nation. Whenever he comes on, he makes a difference. Dropping deep to help his teammates click into gear was a notable switch from the first-half.
  • Sub – Ollie Watkins – 9/10: The Dutch defence had it easy for most of the night, but Ollie Watkins came on and took the game by the scruff of the neck and took it upon himself to send England to their second consecutive European Championship final.

Player of the Match – Ollie Watkins

Watkins’ turn, his shot, his emotions that followed, everything was perfect. It showed that, if Southgate trusts him more often, Watkins could be the one to take the Three Lions into their next dawn.


All statistics collected via Fotmob (correct as of 10/07/2024)

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