Bonucci: ‘The English motivated me. A special dedication to Paolo Rossi’

by | Jul 13, 2021 10:10

Italy defender Leonardo Bonucci said the English fans motivated him when they booed their national anthem at Wembley and made a ‘special dedication’ to Paolo Rossi.

Bonucci scored the equaliser to help Italy turn the Final around, as Luke Shaw had given England the lead after only two minutes.

The Azzurri continued to push but needed penalties to beat the English and ultimately lift the UEFA Euro 2020 trophy on Sunday night.

“I was in the right place at the right time,” Bonucci told Radio RAI 1. “We lacked that centimeter but from there on we believed in it until we brought it home.

“The dedication goes to those who left us in this year and a half. Among so many champions, as done for [Davide] Astori, I want to make a special dedication to Paolo Rossi, a great man.

“The cup is for him and the Italians who have suffered.”

Italy paraded the trophy in an open top bus last night, as Bonucci was on the forefront to fight for the green light from the local authorities.

“Today we just tried to give the dream to our fans, who wanted to stop us and had found the bus closed,” Bonucci said. “With so many people around, the best solution was to give them these moments.

“Thanks to everyone, from the first to the last Italian.”

Bonucci took it out on the English after the win and revealed he was motivated by the fans who ‘whistled’ during the Italian anthem.

“They whistled the anthem, they thought they had brought it home,” Bonucci said. “This, to me and the old man there [Giorgio Chiellini] did nothing but increase our motivation.

“It was a personal satisfaction for me and Giorgio, who have not always been getting the praise we deserved.”

Leo Bonucci roar

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