Iceland's fairytale continues as England crash outComments
Iceland pulled off one of the biggest shocks in European Championship history when they stunned England 2-1 on Monday.
Manchester United midfielder Wayne Rooney had put England ahead with a fourth-minute penalty, but Iceland equalised two minutes later thanks to a close-range finish from Ragnar Sigurdsson.
Kolbeinn Sigthorsson then struck to hand the underdogs a lead they would never relinquish against a toothless England attack.
Pundits were quick to rank England’s defeat alongside that against the amateurs of the United States in the 1950 World Cup but such a judgement conveniently overlooks the progress the Icelanders have made in recent seasons.
They will next lock horns with hosts France on Sunday
7 facts you didn't know about #Iceland´s national football team #Vikingchanthttps://t.co/qGC8W2hrZVpic.twitter.com/dcoefTcQRp— Iceland Magazine (@IcelandMag) 28 June 2016
Hodgson resigns after defeat
Roy Hodgson, who steered the team to 10 straight wins in qualifying, duly became the latest in a long line of England managers to fall on his sword after a failure to get to the business end when it really matters.
“I would’ve loved to stay on for another two years, however I’m pragmatic and know that we are in the results business,” said Roy Hodgson. “My contract was always up after the Euros, so now is the time for someone else to oversee the progress of this young, hungry, extremely talented group of players.”
Hodgson’s departure also marks the farewell of the highest paid boss at Euro 2016. The 68-year-old earned 4.2 million euros a year to put him ahead of Italy’s Antonio Conte and Turkey’s Fatih Terim.
Gareth Southgate, who is the current England U-21 coach, has been tipped as one of the favourites to replace him.
End of a golden era?
A first-half effort from defender Giorgio Chiellini and a stoppage-time goal by striker Graziano Pelle sent the Azzurri into the quarter-finals at Euro 2016 and left Spain to mull over a second successive failure on the international stage.
They came into the tournament hoping to re-establish their status as the game’s dominant power but it wasn’t to be as la Roja were second best from the start.
The 65-year-old Del Bosque, who steered Spain to success at the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012, is reportedly considering his future which he will discuss with the football federation.
The defeat was Spain’s fourth in their last seven World Cup and European Championship matches, which is one more than in their previous 31 major tournament games.
Gerard Pique and Buffon after yesterday's Italy-Spain game #EURO2016 [efe] pic.twitter.com/LxpTxf2kfI— FC Barcelona Fl (@FCBarcelonaFl) 28 June 2016
Benediktsson strikes again
Well that’s all we have time for but we couldn’t leave you without showing you these extraordinary scenes from Iceland as well as images from the now-famous Icelandic commentator Gudmundur Benediktsson, who is making a real name for himself at Euro 2016. See you soon.
Listen to the Icelandic commentator Gudmundur Benediktsson as Iceland score winner against England!!#Euro2016https://t.co/b4p66ibpUa— Love Belfast ❤️ (@love_belfast) 27 June 2016