We all know the long history that England and Germany share on a football pitch, but precious few losses hurt more than those on home soil.
The German’s inflicted England’s last ever defeat at the old Wembley, but in 1996, they inflicted one of the most devastating losses the Three Lions have ever suffered.
It wasn’t the manner of the defeat, but the fact that the European Championships were in England and we actually made the semi-finals!
England would lose 6-5 on penalties after drawing the game 1-1 after extra time and it is the last time they have genuinely looked like winning a tournament.
It was thought the squad of the early 2000s constituted as the ‘Golden Generation’, but what about Terry Venables’ men from back in ’96? We look at where they are now.
The legendary Arsenal stopper collected 75 caps for England, the second most-ever for a goalkeeper behind Peter Shilton. Since retiring in 2004, Seaman has appeared in Dancing on Ice, he’s taken part in six Soccer Aid matches, been a goalkeeper coach for non-league outfit Wembley and can be found given his opinion in the media.
Pyscho banished plenty of demons by scoring in the penalty shootouts against Spain and then Germany after missing against West Germany at Italia 90. After retiring in 2002, Pearce went into management having spells with Manchester City, England Under 21s, the Great Britain Olympic football team and, most recently, Nottingham Forest where he was adored as a player. Pearce was sacked from the role two years ago and now does sporadic media appearances, but he is third-favourite for the Norwich job at the time of typing.
The commanding centre-half spent his whole career with Arsenal making over 500 appearances before retiring in 2002. He tried his hand at management initially and has had spells with Wycombe and Portsmouth – both now in League Two – before heading to Azerbaijan for a year with Gabala. He is currently head of youth development at Chinese side Chongqing Lifan.
Well, this has come full circle hasn’t it! Southgate collected 57 caps for England and missed the spot kick that actually knocked us out against the Germans back in 1996 (you may recall a funny Pizza Hut advert). Now, he is the England manager after impressing with the Under 21s and his first match as boss is against – you guessed it – Germany.
Deployed as a wing-back against Germany – primarily to allow Paul Gascoigne to flourish in a midfield three – Anderton was a talented player when fit. Unfortunately, he coined the nickname ‘Sick Note’ because he was hardly ever at full throttle. He played 30 times for England, but since retiring in 2008 the former winger has stayed away from management, instead opting to delve into the media from time to time.
The Liverpool-born playmaker was always incredibly gifted and it’s a surprise he only grabbed 37 international caps. He spent four years at Real Madrid after leaving Liverpool and he won two La Liga titles and two Champions League winners’ medals. He is now a pundit for BT Sport and also owns several racehorses with former teammate Robbie Fowler through a company named The Macca and Growler Partnership.
The ultra-aggressive midfielder won 53 caps for England and didn’t retire from the game until 2007. He has since managed six football league sides including Blackburn and Blackpool and, at this time of writing, is being linked with the vacant Middlesbrough post. He’s often seen in the media talking about his son, Tom, who plays for Derby County.
The former Juventus and Arsenal man has a tremendous record at international level with 27 goals in 62 caps. His transfer fees totalled around £20 million – and that’s back in the early ’90s! After retiring in 2001 he went into management and guided the England Under 21s for three years. He then held various posts at Manchester City before taking up is most recent post with Indian Super League side, Pune City, in 2015. That would only last one year, but Platt can also be found writing columns on tactics in FourFourTwo.
Where to start with this one? Gazza is one of the most naturally gifted and talented players England has ever produced – bar none. He was also inches away from winning the game for us on that fateful night at Wembley. Unfortunately, his demons ruined the prime of his career and have haunted him ever since. He has been arrested, sectioned and put into rehab on several occasions. The 57-time England international retired in 2004 and had one management role with Kettering the year after, but his demons scuppered that opportunity. Gazza was left with a fractured skull and 11 stitches after he was attacked in December 2016 and he cancelled a stage talk last week due to his ongoing troubles.
The former Spurs and Manchester United forward formed a potent partnership with Alan Shearer for the Three Lions coined SAS. After the 51-time international finally retired in 2008, he too eventually ventured into management with Stevenage in 2015. Unfortunately, he was sacked in February 2016 and has admitted returning to the ground in a disguise like some crazy ex to check on the team. He has now stated he is waiting for another crack at management.
The Premier League’s all-time record goalscorer netted for England in this fixture giving them a dream start in the third minute. That was one of his 30 goals in 62 caps for England and he netted in the shoot-out, too. He now works as a pundit on Match of the Day since retiring in 2006, and even though he is branded as quite dour sometimes, he is still widely respected in the game, and rightly so.