England through to Euros final after 2-1 win against Netherlands

Celebrations begin as England are through to the Euro 2024 final on Sunday

England are through to the Euro 2024 final after beating the Netherlands 2-1 on Wednesday.

No English men’s team has made it to a major final on foreign soil before and now they have the chance to become European champions for the first time this weekend when they face off against Spain.

In the seventh minute, Xavi Simmons put the Dutch national team ahead, jumping up on the barriers to celebrate with fans.

Shortly after, England were awarded a penalty by referee Felix Zwayer after a VAR check for a kick on Kane by Denzel Dumfries.

Kane dusted himself off to take the resulting spot-kick and then equalised for Gareth Southgate’s side.

Both teams had some close chances, with Netherlands defender Denzel Dumfries cracking a header against the crossbar.

Phil Foden came within millimetres of giving England the lead at the midway point of the first half as his close-range effort squeaked past Verbruggen but was cleared off the line by Dumfries.

The orange side had to make one early substitution after former Manchester United forward Memphis Depay was forced off through injury with over 10 minutes of the first half still to play.

Joey Veerman came on in his place.

Southgate decided to make a change at the interval with Luke Shaw, who came off the bench against Switzerland for his first minutes since injuring his hamstring in February, on in place of Kieran Trippier.

Meanwhile, Shaw’s former Manchester United team-mate Wout Weghorst came on for the Netherlands as Ronald Koeman took off Donyell Malen.

It was the Netherlands who started the second half on top as Pickford was forced into a smart save from Van Dijk.

England barely had a chance until Bukayo Saka thought he had turned home to put them ahead, only for the offside flag to go up against Kyle Walker.

Southgate responded to a quieter second-half display by again turning to his bench, replacing Kane and Foden with Cole Palmer and Ollie Watkins.

England looked laboured but produced a moment of magic to take the lead as the game entered stoppage time.

It was Southgate’s two late substitutes who combined for the goal, with Palmer passing into Watkins and the Aston Villa forward firing a fine, low finish past Verbruggen.

Prime Minister Keir Starmer celebrates Kane equaliser from Nato summit

Fans kept an especially close eye on German referee Felix Zwayer, who has history with England midfielder Jude Bellingham.

The player was fined by the German federation in 2021 after he referenced Zwayer's involvement in a match-fixing scandal back in 2006.

When asked by ITV News Sports Editor Steve Scott if having Zwayer referee tonight's match made for an "uncomfortable situation", England left-back Luke Shaw said: "no, not at all".

"I think we have to respect UEFA on whoever they decide to pick as the ref," Shaw said at a press conference on Monday.

"That won't change anything about us, I think we still just focus on the game in hand, not too much about what refs we've been given or this and that. So for us, it won't make any difference."

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