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Sunday, 1 July 2012

image for Euro 2012: England crowned Champions!
England at last honoured for being good at something

Despite their exit to Italy at the quarter-final stage of the main tournament, England today gathered a small consolation when they were named the inaugural winners of the European Penalty Missing Championships.

The only two teams to lose on penalties during the comp were England and Portugal (to Spain in the semi-final) but England were awarded the trophy on historical records, having lost to Portugal twice on pens in 2004 and 2006.

The squad, announced today by Stuart Pearce, a controversial choice, as despite being the first Englishman to miss in a penalty shoot-out v West Germany in 1990, he also converted 2 for England at Euro 1996 (v Spain & Germany)

John Terry, who hasn't missed a penalty for England, was selected as captain for his crucial flop for Chelsea at the 2008 Champions League Final v Man United.

Also in the squad are David Batty & Paul Ince (98 v Argentina) Chris Waddle (90 v W.Germany) Southgate (96 v Germany) Darius Vassel & David Beckham (04 v Portugal), Frank Lampard & Jamie Carragher (06 v Portugal) Ashley Young & Ashley Cole (2012 v Italy)

Either aptly or ironically for a team of players who have all missed penalties, the squad has no goalkeeper.

The Championships were sponsored by a leading pizza restaurant.

A spokesman today explained the choice of England as champions. "With six defeats in seven shoot-outs, England were odds-on favourite. Congratulations on being winners at last! 46 years of hurt ended! Anyone fancy a pizza?"

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