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It’s three years to the day since England were beaten 2-1 by Iceland at Euro 2016

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It’s three years to the day since England were knocked out of Euro 2016 by Iceland

It was one of the darkest nights in the history of the England national team.

BBC Sport described it as the “worst humiliation since they were knocked out of the 1950 World Cup by USA in Brazil”.

June 27. 2016. The night England were dumped out of the European Championships by Iceland.

Iceland, with a population of just 333,000 people, were ranked 34th in the world at the time.

Even though England had flattered to deceive against Russia, Wales and Slovakia in the group stages, this still felt like a banker for Roy Hodgson’s side prior to kick off.

Hodgson’s side got off to the perfect start when Wayne Rooney converted a fourth-minute penalty.

However, things then took a spectacular turn for the worse.

Ragnar Sigurdsson immediately equalised for Iceland, bundling in from close range, before a Joe Hart clanger allowed Kolbeinn Sigthorsson to make it 2-1.

Every cloud has a silver lining and we were treated to a hilarious moment involving former England manager Steve McClaren making an idiot of himself live on Sky Sports.

While praising England for their response after the equaliser, and pointing out that Iceland’s only threat was Sigthorsson, Iceland took the lead… through Sigthorsson.

Watch it here…

The remaining 70 minutes were nothing short of torturous for England fans.

If one moment summed up that England performance, it was this tragic Harry Kane free-kick…

There was also a bizarre moment when Hodgson spotted himself on the big screen and quickly pretended he was deep in thought.

The full-time whistle went and Hodgson knew he was a dead man walking. He did the honourable thing by resigning immediately afterwards.

The reaction from the pundits inside the Match of the Day studio was scathing - and with good reason.

Alan Shearer said it was the “worst performance” he had ever seen from the national team, adding that England were “tactically inept”.

"We were out-fought, out-thought, out-battled and totally hopeless for 90 minutes. I said after the three group games that England weren't good enough.

"It looked to me like Roy was making it up as he was going along.”

Rio Ferdinand called the display “embarrassing” and called on the Football Association to hire a “young, dynamic manager who knows the young players coming through.”

Fortunately for England fans, they did just that. (Well, after Sam Allardyce shot himself in the foot).

And just two years later, under the management of Gareth Southgate, England would go on to reach their first World Cup semi-final since 1990.

As the old saying goes, it takes the lows to appreciate the highs.

Ain’t that the truth.

Topics:
Football
Gareth Southgate
Ragnar Sigurdsson
Iceland Football
Kolbeinn Sigthorsson
Harry Kane
England Football
Joe Hart
Wayne Rooney

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