The controversy over England win in the UEFA Euro 2020 semifinals against Denmark continues as UEFA has charged the English Football Association (FA) with multiple offenses, including the laser that targeted Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel during the deciding moment of match. The laser was pointed at Schmeichel as England captain Harry Kane stepped up to take a penalty in extra time.
“Disciplinary proceedings have been opened following the UEFA EURO 2020 semi-final match between England and Denmark (2-1), played on July 7 at Wembley Stadium,” UEFA said in a statement. “Charges against England: Use of laser pointer by its supporters; disturbance caused by its supporters during the national anthem; lighting of fireworks by its supporters.”
Television cameras captured a laser light being pointed onto Schmeichel’s face as he prepared to face a penalty from Kane. The FA and UEFA officials searched for the source of the laser pointer when they were first made aware of it being used during the first half of extra time. “The case will be dealt with by the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body (CEDB) in due course,” UEFA added.
During the controversial extra time that occurred after Raheem Sterling was awarded a penalty following a minimal contact from Joakim Mæhle, Kane’s spotkick was saved by Kasper Schmeichel, but the England striker pounced to score from the rebound and seal the win. England is looking to win their first major trophy since the 1966 World Cup and play Italy in the European Championship final at home.
Meanwhile, a chorus of boos from sections of the England fans was heard during the Danish national anthem. The incident has been criticized by PM Boris Johnson’s official spokesman. “We don’t want fans to be booing teams,” said the spokesman. “We want fans to be showing support and being respectful. UEFA are looking into that, that’s a matter for them but it’s not something we would want to see.”
Not since the 1960s have England reached a final and a semi-final in back-to-back tournaments while, in previous European Championships, they had only ever won one knockout tie – against Spain on penalties in 1996. For the first time, they will be in the finals of Euro and will try to bring football home as they take on Italy, who defeated Spain earlier this week to seal their place in the final.
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