Italian manager Roberto Mancini said seeing three years of hard work succeeding with the glory of Euro 2020 brought tears to his eyes at Wembley after his team beat England on penalties.
The Italians fell behind with a goal from Luke Shaw but equalized in the second half thanks to Leonardo Bonucci, before winning 3-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw after extra time.
It was the first European Championship title since 1968 and was the result of Mancini’s mental construction of the national team after his humiliating failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Asked about the tears she shed all the time, Mancini said: “It was a feeling that came after doing something amazing, seeing people celebrating, fans celebrating in the suburbs.
“It was to see how much we were able to create, all the work that we have done in the last three years and especially in the last 50 days, which has been very difficult.
“There have never been any issues and the players deserve praise for that, we understand each other very well, . Not only did they do a good job there but I think it does. That we were able to form this spirit team.
“They created something that can’t be separated later. They will always be equal to this victory because they have so much respect for each other.
Veteran defender Bonucci won the UEFA Star of the Match award winning his first international award, nine years after losing the Euro 2012 final against Spain.
The 34-year-old shouted “Coming to Rome” on camera after the game, in response to the popular “Returning Home” song to English fans.
“We have heard day after day since the game against Denmark, that the trophy will return to London,” Bonucci said.
“Sorry to them, but of course the cup will fly to Rome and so Italians around the world will be able to enjoy this tournament.
“It’s for them, it’s for us, we’ve been saying since day one that we think we can do it. It’s just that the Italians are celebrating all over the world tonight.”
Bonucci is one of the oldest members of the squad, but youngsters like tournament goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, midfielder Nicolo Barella and winger Federico Chiesa have been attracted to Euro 2020 to offer a better future.
“We were desperate to not qualify for the World Cup, but you must always believe it, aim for the peak and don’t give up,” added Bonucci.
“It’s a revival of Italian football. I am sure now that this team and this coach will still grow with more headlines in the future. “