PRIMARY school children are continuing to show their support for Gareth Southgate and his England team after falling agonisingly short against Italy on Sunday night (11 July).
Pupils at St. Edwards Primary School on Blackburn Road, Darwen have excitedly cheered on the Three Lions throughout the delayed Euro 2020 tournament – and won’t stop now despite a gut-wrenching penalty shoot-out defeat in the final.
As the side progressed into the knockout stages of the tournament, the school held an ‘England Day’, where children brought in flags and wore football themed clothing.
Elsie, aged 5, spoke of how she ‘loved making a flag’ while Thea, 7, said she’d ‘had a brilliant day dressing up and dancing’.
While Sunday’s result wasn’t the one the nation had so desperately hoped for, the pupils have described their pride in what is a young, exciting and inspiring team.
Aiofe-Niamh, 8, said: “They all showed great resilience and kept trying until the end.”
Lukas, 8, simply said: “They did the country proud.”
Ruby, 9, had supportive words for Bukayo Saka, whose missed penalty brought the final to an end: “I was really upset because loads of people were crying but Saka is young and I felt sorry for him. We really wanted them to win.”
Marcus, 10, said: “Pickford and the rest of the England team did really well to get to penalties. The whole team showed resilience and worked hard.”
Megan, 10, said: “I was sad that England lost but really proud that we made it to the final.”
Head teacher Vanessa Knowles was keen to put a positive spin on the final loss, hosting an assembly about resilience on Monday morning – which has clearly rubbed off on the disappointed pupils.
David, 9, however couldn’t hide his frustration regarding England’s penalties hoodoo, saying: “I was really annoyed when the penalties didn’t go in the net. I was shouting at the TV!”
There is always the World Cup next year for a frustrated David and and all of the other St. Edwards pupils, who will be supporting the side no matter what during Qatar 2022.