how England celebrated the glory of Euro 2022

how England celebrated the glory of Euro 2022

It was a long time before the Lionesses retreated to the locker room, retreating beyond the glare of the cameras that had captured every joyful tear-stained face, every confetti snow angel, every interpretation of Sweet Caroline and Three Lions, and every corner of a lift of the trophy that ended 56 years of pain.

In the locker room there was more dancing and singing. “Everyone dances, beers fly everywhere, Abba is there, Céline Dion,” said Ella Toone, the scorer of England’s first goal in the historic 2-1 overtime defeat against Germany in the Euro 2022 final.

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We got a taste of the antics when England winner’s scorer Chloe Kelly snapped in the mixed zone where players are interviewed, medal around their neck and trophy in hand, to give a short “It’s coming home” dance to the microphone before. of whizzing away again. Then, the players walked into Sarina Wiegman’s press conference, danced onstage, singing Three Lions again, while goalkeeper Mary Earps and right-back Lucy Bronze rotated their hips while standing on top of the desk where she was standing. sitting the coach.

They were magical and joyful celebration scenes of players struggling to digest what they got, Bronze said, until “at home, on the sofa, drinking a glass of orange juice or a cup of tea.” He said: “That will be the moment when you think it’s crazy, we are European champions.”

After walking through the mixed zone and doing interviews after interviews, the players boarded the team bus back to the Lensbury hotel in Teddington, which has become a home away from home since the team traveled south after the game. opening at Old Trafford. “The whole bus back to the hotel was celebrating,” Toone said. “They were all everywhere, on tables, chairs, down the alley.”

A group of photographers and fans greeted the team outside the hotel and continued to dance in the courtyard before disappearing from view again. There, the party really started. In a room decorated with balloons, a big cake, lots of drinks, pizzas and canapés – and a dance floor, with a DJ and a band to keep them up – the players were welcomed by their closest family members.

“It seemed unreal,” Toone said when asked about the impact of seeing his family after more than a month away. “They made this journey with us and it’s difficult, we couldn’t celebrate with them after the games, so it was worth waiting for that hug after the final whistle.”

Ella Toone (right), with Alessia Russo, holds the Euro 2022 trophy at Wembley.

Ella Toone (right), with Alessia Russo, holds the Euro 2022 trophy at Wembley. Photograph: Dylan Martinez / Reuters

Bronze said: “There have been a lot of tears, there have been a lot of hearts to heart. I think everyone’s mum and dad, brothers, sisters and cousins, talked to every single player on the team. It was as if everyone else’s family wanted to thank everyone else on the team for making their daughter’s or sister’s dream come true. It was amazing. It was a great night and I have as many memories of the night as I probably have of the game.

Many families stayed for the duration, but Bronze’s family didn’t last. “We have two less than two,” she said. “They did well! I’m not going to lie, my nephew did very well. He kept up with everyone, got on the dance floor a little bit until two in the morning and then his little two-year party was thrown. He thought he had a medal because he had a lanyard with a picture of his aunt Lucy on it. He told everyone that he was his medal, which is very nice. “

Wiegman struggled to keep up with the party team who, according to captain Leah Williamson, “have celebrated more than we have played football in the past 24 hours.” Williamson, with the bucket hat on his head, was greeted by cheers from the crowd in Trafalgar Square on Monday, where players masked tired and hangover faces with sunglasses. “This group, we like to work hard but we like to celebrate more,” Williamson said.

Bronze tried to get Wiegman a beer on Monday morning. “Please don’t do this, Lucy,” she said the manager had replied. Wiegman had drunk half a beer the night before. “For the first time in my life I enjoyed it, because I don’t really like beer,” she said.

Bronze hopes Wiegman has the taste now: “We wound her up, but that’s something she’ll have to get used to now that she’s an honorary British woman. You will have to practice. Hopefully we can have more nights like that, so she’ll need it.

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