Ollie Watkins’ dramatic late winner sends the Three Lions into the Euro 2024 final. Re-live the action with the best facts, stats and Opta data in our Netherlands vs England stats page.

A 90th-minute winner from substitute Ollie Watkins saw England reach the Euro 2024 final as they beat the Netherlands 2-1 in Dortmund on Wednesday.

It was a promising start for the Dutch as Xavi Simons blasted in an early opener, though that was soon cancelled out by a debatable penalty won and scored by Harry Kane.

England manager Gareth Southgate has had plenty of criticism for his use of substitutes in Germany – or a lack thereof – and he turned to his bench late on again here. It was one of those subs, Watkins, who decided things in the closing moments with a low shot across the despairing dive of Bart Verbruggen, giving England a rare victory over the Netherlands.

They will face Spain in Sunday’s showpiece in Berlin; a daunting task perhaps, but for now, England can put all the negativity they have faced in the last few weeks behind them and look forward to a second consecutive European Championship final.

The Three Lions had won just one of their previous nine meetings with the Netherlands in all competitions (D4 L4), while of all nations England have faced 20+ times in their history, only against Brazil (15%) did they have a lower win rate than they against the Oranje (27%).

It didn’t look like that record would improve after seven minutes, though.

At 21 years and 80 days old, Simons was the second-youngest player to play in the semi-finals of a major tournament (World Cup/Euros) for the Dutch after Arjen Robben at Euro 2004 (20y 159d). And it didn’t take long for him to show why he’s one of the hottest prospects in world football.

He dispossessed Declan Rice before running at the England backline, taking advantage of the space afforded to him by retreating defenders before lashing a tremendous shot from outside the box past Jordan Pickford and into the top-far corner.

It was the earliest goal scored in a European Championship semi-final since Alan Shearer for England against Germany at Euro 96 (third minute). Simons also became the second-youngest goalscorer ever for the Netherlands at the Euros after Patrick Kluivert against England in 1996 (19 years and 353 days).

Kane tried a shot from range as England looked to respond but it was palmed away by Verbruggen; moments later, after a neat run from Bukayo Saka, the ball fell for the England captain in the penalty area. His first-time effort flashed over the the bar.

While the Netherlands breathed a sigh of relief, it was short-lived. Following a VAR check, referee Felix Zwayer awarded England a penalty as Denzel Dumfries had caught Kane straight after he connected with the ball. Verbruggen correctly dived to his right but couldn’t stop Kane’s inch-perfect spot-kick from nestling in the corner.

With questions having been raised about Kane’s form – including by us – his successful penalty made him joint-top scorer at Euro 2024 with three goals. It also meant he has scored more knockout stage goals in major tournaments (World Cup/Euros) than any other European player (9), leapfrogging Gerd Müller, Miroslav Klose, Antoine Griezmann, and Kylian Mbappé (all 8).

Phil Foden could have put England ahead when he received a pass in the box from Kobbie Mainoo and showed wonderful feet to create a chance, but his finish under Verbruggen flicked off the goalkeeper’s leg and was stopped on the line by Dumfries.

The Dutch right-back could have had an impact at the other end in the 30th minute when his header from a corner hit the top of England’s crossbar, while two minutes later it was Foden striking the post with a bent effort from over 20 yards. That made it four times England had hit the woodwork at Euro 2024, more often than any other team.

Memphis Depay was forced off injured 10 minutes before half-time, replaced by Joey Veerman, with Simons moving into a more advanced role for Ronald Koeman’s side.

The teams went in level at the break but it had unquestionably been England’s best 45 minutes of the tournament. Their most shots on target in their first five games was four, a total they had matched by the 39th minute here.

Both managers made changes at half-time, with Luke Shaw replacing Kieran Trippier for England and Wout Weghorst coming on for Donyell Malen for the Dutch.

As was the case in Tuesday’s semi-final between Spain and France, the second-half was a calmer affair. It took until the 65th minute for someone to have another shot at goal, with Virgil van Dijk getting on the end of a Veerman free-kick, but Pickford pushed it wide.

Weghorst was making his presence known, conceding three free-kicks by the 70th minute, the most of any player in the game at the time despite only being on for 25 minutes.

After their impressive first-half performance, England seemed to go down a few levels in intensity in the second, and Southgate waited until the 80th minute to make more changes. He almost didn’t need to when Saka scored from a Kyle Walker cross, but it was disallowed for offside against the Manchester City man.

Kane and Foden were immediately replaced by Watkins and Cole Palmer, with Foden going off having completed all 40 of his passes on the night.

Foden pass map v Netherlands

And it was Watkins who decided things in dramatic fashion as the clock ticked towards 90 minutes.

The Aston Villa striker ran onto a pass from fellow sub Palmer, before controlling, pushing away from Stefan de Vrij and drilling a perfect strike low across Verbruggen and into the bottom-left corner.

Watkins’ winner at 89:59 was the latest winning goal scored in a semi-final at the European Championship/World Cup (excluding extra-time). It was also England’s only shot on target in the second half of this match.

It secured a victory for Southgate’s men, making them the first side in European Championship history to reach the final despite trailing in both the quarter-final and semi-final en route.

The Netherlands have now been eliminated from five of their six semi-final ties at the European Championship, with this their first appearance in the stage since 2004.

This was the fourth meeting between England and the Netherlands at a major tournament; the Oranje won 3-1 at Euro 88, followed by a goalless draw at the 1990 World Cup, and a 4-1 win England win at Euro 96.

That victory captured the country’s imagination 28 years ago. Despite a slow start to this tournament, England are just 90 minutes away from possibly their second major tournament win in history.

And they have Ollie Watkins to thank for it.

Ned v Eng momentum

Our Opta match centre delivers you all the Netherlands vs England stats from their Euro 2024 semi-final clash in Dortmund.

The match centre below includes team and player stats, expected goals data, passing networks, an Opta chalkboard and more. It gives you everything you need to do your own match analysis.

Underneath the match centre you can find the official Opta stats on the game as well. 

Netherlands vs England: Post-Match Facts

  • England have now reached the final in two of their four major tournaments under Gareth Southgate (also Euro 2020) – they had only done so in one of their previous 23 World Cup/Euro appearances (1966 World Cup).
  • Ollie Watkins’ winner at 89:59 was the latest winning goal scored in the semi-final at the UEFA European Championship/World Cup (excluding extra time). It was also England’s only shot on target in the second half of this match.
  • Harry Kane’s equaliser for England was his sixth goal in the knockout stages of the European Championship, more than any other player in the competition’s history. It was also his ninth in the knockout stages of major tournaments (World Cup/Euro), the most of any European player.
  • England are the first side in European Championship history to reach the final despite trailing in both the quarter-final and semi-final en route.
  • Netherlands have now been eliminated from seven semi-final matches at major tournaments (World Cup/Euros), the second-most of any European nation, after Germany (8).
  • England have won five of their last six games after conceding the first goal at the European Championship, with the exception seeing them ultimately progress on penalties against Switzerland in the quarter-final. No team has won more matches at the competition after conceding first than the Three Lions (France and Spain also 5).
  • Ollie Watkins became just the second Aston Villa player to score for England at a major tournament (World Cup/Euros), after David Platt, who scored three times at the 1990 FIFA World Cup.
  • Xavi Simons’ seventh minute strike was the earliest goal scored in a European Championship semi-final since Alan Shearer against Germany in 1996 (third minute). At 21 years and 80 days, Simons also became the youngest player to score for the Netherlands in the knockout stages of a major tournament (World Cup/Euros).
  • At 19 years and 82 days, Kobbie Mainoo became the youngest player to play for England in the semi-final of a major tournament. No England player made more tackles (2) or interceptions (2) than Mainoo against Netherlands.
  • This was the first ever European Championship semi-final to see four players aged 21 and under start (Bart Verbruggen and Xavi Simons for Netherlands, Kobbie Mainoo and Jude Bellingham for England).

Enjoy this? Subscribe to our football newsletter to receive exclusive weekly content. You should also follow our social accounts over on XInstagramTikTok and Facebook.