Roy Keane blasted England’s senior players who allowed Bukayo Saka to take the decisive penalty in England’s shootout loss to Italy in the Euro 2020 final.
Saka’s penalty was saved by Gianluigi Donnarumma as England suffered grief at Wembley.
The 19-year-old has never taken a penalty for his club, Arsenal, but has been given the responsibility of taking the all-important fifth kick of the shootout.
“If you’re (Raheem) Sterling or (Jack) Grealish, you can’t sit there and have a young child [Saka] go up for a penalty in front of you, you can’t, ”said Keane ITV. “You can’t let a shy 19 year old come up in front of you. They have a lot more experience, Sterling won trophies, they had to get in front of the youngster and stand up.”
On Monday, Grealish responded on social media insisting he wanted to take a penalty.
“I said I wanted to take one !!!! The chef made so many good decisions during this tournament and he did it tonight! But I don’t want people to say I didn’t want to not take a peno when I said I will … “
England’s other missed penalties came from Jadon Sancho, 21, and Marcus Rashford, 23, both of whom had played peripheral roles in the tournament and came on in the last minute of extra time.
The only successful penalty shooters in England were Harry Maguire and Harry Kane.
“I chose the shooters based on what we did in training and no one is alone. We won together as a team and it’s absolutely up to all of us that we can’t win the game tonight. England boss Gareth Southgate said.
“But as far as the penalties are concerned, it’s my decision and it’s totally up to me.”
Jose criticizes Southgate’s decision-making
Jose Mourinho has criticized Southgate’s decision to have Saka take England’s fifth penalty.
Roma manager said talkSPORT: “The decision of the penalty tellers, I think it’s hard to leave Saka last. I think it’s hard for a kid to have everything on their shoulders at that time. I’m just sorry for him.
“In this situation where was [Raheem] Sterling, where was (John) Stones, where was (Luke) Shaw?
“I think Gareth is such an honest guy. Such a protective coach of his players. I don’t think he would ever say the players weren’t ready. [to take a penalty]. “
Reaction to England’s loss on penalties
I thought Saka was about the best thing to come out of this tournament for England. What talent. He will be part of the English teams for a long time to come.
– Oliver Holt (@ OllieHolt22) July 11, 2021
Reflecting on his own missed penalty 25 years ago, Southgate said on Friday: “These kinds of moments in your life don’t have to define you.”
This is now true for Saka, Rashford and Sancho. No one better to console them.
– James Olley (@JamesOlley) July 11, 2021
Podcast: Great Britain, but the glass is half full | Final review of Euro 2020
It was once again the penalty shootout for England and Gareth Southgate in a landslide defeat in the Euro 2020 final to Italy.
Alice Piper is joined by Pete Smith and Gerard Brand to mull over a dramatic Euro 2020 final with England unable to mark their progress with silverware.
Listen to your podcast provider here