LONDON (AP) – When Italy asked to win the European Championship final against England, a Scottish newspaper elicited mixed reactions.
“The National”, which supports Scottish independence, featured Italian national coach Roberto Mancini as Scottish freedom fighter William Wallace on the front cover of its Saturday edition, a feature reminiscent of Mel Gibson’s film “Braveheart”. featured in the picture. “Save us, Roberto,” wrote the newspaper from Glasgow for Sunday’s European Championship final at London’s Wembley Stadium, “you are our last hope. (We can’t bear 55 more years in which they brag about it) .)”
While many English took it with humor and viewed it as a general football taunt, others reacted angrily and accused “The National” of reinforcing anti-English outrage in Scotland. Harry Cole, editor of British tabloid “The Sun”, called it “sad” on Twitter. In Italy, on the other hand, coach Mancini in Braveheart gear provided the entertainment.
Mancini himself described the first page as “good”, but didn’t want to elaborate on what he felt like “braveheart” before the final: “I guess we have to play our game.” Captain Giorgio Chiellini commented on the front page with a grin: “It made me laugh,” said the 36-year-old.
England won the World Cup 55 years ago in 1966, the only Three Lions title to date. Scottish and English football have a long rivalry, with the untitled Bravehearts often downplayed over the past few decades. In the EM group stage, the teams were drawn 0–0. After this, Scotland dropped out. In fact, most Scots should keep their fingers crossed for Azzurri against their old rivals on Sunday.
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