Euro 2020: Italians in Portsmouth and Hampshire believe they will be served up England in mouthwatering final that could go all way to penalties

ITALIANS believe they will be served up England in a mouthwatering final of Euro 2020 that could go all the way to penalties.

Wednesday, 7th July 2021, 1:23 pm

Italy saw off Spain on Tuesday night in the first semi-final to book their place for the Wembley showpiece final on Sunday.

Meanwhile the Three Lions face Denmark tonight in the other semi-final as they seek to be the first England team to reach a final since the World Cup win in 1966.

And Italians living locally are all in agreement they will be facing England in the final – but opinions are divided on who will win it with both nations hungry for victory.

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The Pizza House on London Road, Portsmouth.
The Pizza House on London Road, Portsmouth.

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Niccoline Diodovich, owner of Italian restaurant Niccoline’s on North Street, Emsworth, said: ‘I think England will get to the final and it will be a close match that England scrape because of their home advantage. It could go all the way to penalties.

‘Italy are not as good as England upfront, who have more attacking options and quicker players. Italy’s defence is a bit old. Look at how Spain did a one-two straight through the middle and scored last night.

‘I like England to do well...but I am Italian. After all the doom and gloom of Covid with both countries hard hit by the pandemic it has helped revitalise people.’

Niccoline, who also has Serbian family roots from seven generations ago, added: ‘It will be a big party and will be exciting to watch.

‘England would have the advantage for the final because they are at home. First of all they have to beat Denmark, who are a boring team. As long as they don’t make any mistakes England will win, though.’

Christian Mascia, who owns the Pizza House on London Road, Hilsea, said: ‘It will be an England versus Italy final. It will be a great match. You couldn’t have a better scenario.

‘Both teams are playing well and deserve to be in the final as they have been the best two teams. I can’t remember the last time England played such quality football.

‘It will be a close match and could go all the way to penalties. With it at Wembley it will be the best chance England will have. The fans could make a difference.

‘I don’t mind who wins it though. I have dual nationality so I can sit back and enjoy the game.’

Peter Cefaj, who works at Bella Calabria on London Road, North End, said Italy playing England in the final would be the ‘best’.

‘It would be a very exciting game,’ he said. ‘I think England will beat Denmark but Italy will win in the final because we are the best. Our players are very strong and hungry.’

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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