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England crushes Ukraine, wants to face Denmark in the semifinals of Euro 2020

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England crushes Ukraine, wants to face Denmark in the semifinals of Euro 2020

ROME (AP) – England are coming home with something to play for.

Harry Kane scored twice and England beat Ukraine 4-0 on Saturday to reach the semi-finals of the European Championship.

It was the only Euro 2020 match that England had to play outside of Wembley Stadium and it was the team’s most dominant performance at the tournament.

Harry Maguire and Jordan Henderson also scored as England kept a clean sheet for the fifth straight game.

England are now returning to London to face Denmark on Wednesday. The Danes beat the Czech Republic 2-1 in Baku.

Italy will face Spain in the other semi-final match on Tuesday, and next weekend’s final will also be played at Wembley.

The last time England reached the quarter-finals of the European Championship was in 1996. But the bigger goal right now is to duplicate the success of the 1966 England team that won the World Cup at home.

Kane scored on England’s first chance in the fourth minute, using a bunt to redirect a pass from Raheem Sterling for his second goal in as many games. The ball entered goalkeeper Georgiy Bushchan’s shoulder at the near post.

England also scored early in the second half after Kane was fouled for about 10 seconds. A Luke Shaw free kick set off a Maguire header. Four minutes later, Kane got his second by heading up another Shaw cross on a play that included a Sterling heel pass for England to dazzle.

After failing to score in the group stage, Kane now has three goals in two games after also scoring in a 2-0 win over Germany in the round of 16.

Kane won the Golden Boot with six goals at the 2018 World Cup, when England also reached the semi-finals. He came out to a standing ovation at the Stadio Olimpico when he came out midway through the second half.

Henderson’s goal, England’s first after a decade with the national team, also came with a header, as Ukraine’s defenders had no answers to England’s aerial prowess.

Ukraine, coming off a 2-1 win in extra time over Sweden, had relied on occasional counterattacks in the first half and produced a number of chances just before the break. Otherwise, England was in control.

The Italian government had explicitly warned Britain-based England fans to stay away from the match unless they could show they had observed five days of quarantine since their arrival.

Still, there were clearly more supporters from England than Ukraine inside the partially packed stadium. But a group of yellow-clad Ukrainian fans made a lot of noise, drumming and singing.

Due to the pandemic, the Olimpico could only be 25% full with around 16,000 fans.

Residents of Ukraine also faced restrictions on travel to Italy.

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