The Italians are said to have been left disgusted at what England players did after the full time whistle of the Euros final.
The Three Lions footballers were given a guard of honour by new European champions Italy as they collected their runners-up medals after the game.
But many of them – including Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho, Luke Shaw, Jack Grealish, Mason Mount and Kyle Walker – quickly removed the medals that were presented to them by UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin.
— katy ✿ (@wonderchanges) July 11, 2021
The players clearly didn’t want to carry a reminder of their defeat, despite putting in a strong performance against the four-time world champs.
However, they faced criticism from many on social media for a perceived lack of respect, while others urged the squad to be proud of their achievements in the competition.
England captain Harry Kane gave his verdict on if the silver medal was an achievement or a missed opportunity.
“I think, for sure, a missed opportunity right now,” he said.
“It’s not every day you get to a final, especially for your national team. It’s been 55 years since our last one.
“The opportunity was there for us, we didn’t quite take it. That’s going to hurt for a long, long time.
“That’s football. You’ve got to get on with it and move on.”
The only players to have kept the medals on after having it placed around their neck was Jordan Pickford, Harry Maguire, Tyrone Mings, Aaron Ramsdale, Sam Johnstone, Raheem Sterling and Jordan Henderson, as did manager Gareth Southgate. Kalvin Phillips was seen kissing his medal as he walked away.
As mentioned, Italians, as well as a other supporters, players and journalists from various other countries were left disgusted at what England players did after full time whistle of Euros final…
Seems a new trend now to take your medal off, it’s like who can get it of quickest infront of the cameras. They should have been proud of how far they got
— David Wheater (@BigWheatz31) July 15, 2021
@Matthew46012930: I’ve always said it’s a bit disrespectful taking the medals off. I would always leave it on. Others may have a different view to me though
@spnkphne: My cousin, who is Italian, was just saying this in the pub! 👍🏻
@adamghani2000: Absolutely appalling seeing them take their runners up medals off we just got to a major tournament final and only our selves to blame for loss should be proud to revive the medal and wear the shirt appealed with players having the cheek to take off their medals #England
@aarron_boyce: Kind of disappointing seeing half of the @England players taking off their medals quicker than they’re put round their necks! You should be fucking proud to have that medal round your neck after making it to a major final for the first time in 55 years! #Euro2020Final #England
@SEvansPE: How can you possibly teach sportsmanship to students when they see England football players not being able to keep their medals on 😳😳😳
@NewtonRosie543: Nothing winds me up more than players instantly taking off medals, be proud you got to the final to earn that medal – so disappointing
@smonge98: I’d want every player of a team I support to keep a second place medal on. Accepting defeat is good sportsmanship and should be regarded as motivation to improving for next time. That’s why I think it should at least be received respectfully.
@letsgoseeitall: Poor sportsmanship for @england players to remove their silver medals. Coming second place is a great achievement… I have never seen an Olympian decline or refuse their silver medal.
@DecooHughes: England boys taking off their runners up medals, inject it into my veins 😂😂😂😂😂
@aaazzzuuurrriii: Look how pathetic those England players are taking off their medals
@PaulMcAweney: It struck me at the time as lacking class and disrespectful to the tournament and its winners. Seems to be the thing to do these days?
@kiarie_kangonga: The England players taking off the medals, weak mentality
@clairefiddes: Imagine if silver and bronze medalists did the same at the olympics.
@aaron_ciaccio: Ye we see it as being bad losers, especially when they took it off as soon as it was given to them
@DaveWedgbury: Takes two teams to make a final, should be proud.
@afc_lynch: Not hard to keep it on for more then 2 seconds
@supermancini: England boyz showin disrespect with runners up medals, saddos
@Jim_Elllis: Taking the medals off is EXACTLY why the rest of the UK don’t support England.
@RobintheRed598: Should be an issue over here, it’s such a bad mentality to think you’re too good for a runners up medal. Especially players like Ben White who’ve never won anything more than a Championship title.
@Shiv82178096: I first saw it like many others after the europa league final and the way I saw it was that its good that the United players are not accepting being runners up. With England it’s different cuz it was their first major final in 55 years
@raxx_e: The way the England boys took their medals off instead of wearing them, man this hurts
@gordonmcinally: England showing a real lack of respect by removing their silver medals as soon as they’re given. Poor sportsmanship no matter how disappointed they must be.
@LauJayde: Its heartbreaking for all the children who may have saw this. My son loves football and sports but his disabilities means he may not always be the fastest, or the more agile. BUT I’d rather him know that no matter where he places he should be proud. As adults we should be example
@RhyanneWoodbine: It’s the England players taking the medals back off for me 💀
@B_E_Andre: I wish the England team wouldn’t take their medals off 🙁. It’s still a huge achievement.
@KrzysWiniarski: I have no respect for no class England players!
@unoitmakessense: I agree, it just seems like the players are sulking. City and United players did it in their Europe final games also. I get it’s disappointing but at least wait till you get off camera to take them off.
@siduk1: Complete disrespect. Learn to lose gracefully, it’s a part of life. You’ve been blessed to be given a chance to play for your country. Represent them with pride. Onwards and upwards, let’s focus on #Qatar2022. #EURO2020 you’ve been amazing.
@Italiaboy: Not very classy of England footballers getting rid of medals from their necks
@MazzucatoM: I really don’t get why England players took off the medals so quickly and dismissively. Bad vibe x sport. They played well throughout the tournament. Period.
@EmmaKennedy: Ah lads, keep your medals on. Be proud. #Euro2020Final
@carolecadwalla: A week ago they were overwhelmed to have made the final. It was an amazing achievement. Be proud. Put the medals back on.
@The_JamesJordan: I’m very patriotic and of course wanted England to win and am gutted they didn’t. BUT Firstly we looked like sore losers when they immediately took their medals off. And another reason I don’t like football is because once again the football thugs are out in force on social media
@adrianweckler: The disrespect the England players show by taking those medals off.