Terry Venables: I still get goosebumps whenever I think about England at Euro 96

Managing England in Euro ’96 and representing my country provided the best moments of my life, which I will never forget

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I am delighted that Wembley will be hosting the semi-finals and final of Euro 2020. Managing England there in Euro ’96 and representing my country provided the best moments of my life, which I will never forget.

We can only hope that we see all that – the great camaraderie in the streets and in the stadiums – again in six years time. We made it a really good party in 1996 and we can do the same in 2020.

That tournament was a wonderful occasion, uniting the country through football. I was so proud of what we did, and we made the whole country proud of us.

Hardly a day goes by even now – even when I’m abroad - without an English person coming up to me and saying ‘it was our greatest moment in football, thank you so much’. It still gives me the goose-pimples when you realise how much you can give back to your country, it is something that all of us who were involved – fans and players – can always cherish. I certainly will.

 

All of the games we played at Wembley in 1996 were great. After the first Switzerland game we really came out to play. Holland, where we won 4-1, was a great game. Scotland was always going to be a different type of game, with an amazing passionate atmosphere. We had to fight as hard as them in the first half and then we won it with two of the goals of the tournament: all of those passes before Gary Neville’s cross for Alan Shearer, and then of course Gazza’s volley was just amazing.

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Then against Germany was incredible itself, it was great to see the whole country come together. And when the ball came across the goal, and Gazza went for it, we all gasped together. But in football as in life, you can’t have everything.

But I do hope that England can be a bit better in 2020 than we did last time, but hopefully with so many good young players at the moment they will have a real jamboree.

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