England’s Lionesses roared into action at the historic women’s Euros final at Wembley Stadium tonight and nearly opened the scoring in minutes – watched on by Prince William.
They had been urged onto greatness moments earlier by Tess Dolan, the little girl who went viral at Bramall Lane earlier in the week dancing to Sweet Caroline.
And the crowds were even treated to a flypast from jets above the famous grounds before kick-off.
It was almost the perfect start for the team as Fran Kirby found Ellen White but she headed it straight to the keeper.
Earlier the Lionesses’ two biggest Royal fans had wished them luck and the future king was even there in person to cheer them from the stands.
The Duke of Cambridge posted a video to his official Twitter account this morning in which he and Charlotte shared their support for the Lionesses.
‘We both want to wish the lionesses the best of luck tonight, you’ve done amazingly well in the competition and we’re rooting for you all the way!’ Will exclaimed, before Charlotte chipped in: ‘Good luck, I hope you win. Bye!’
England’s Ellen White in action with Germany’s Lena Oberdo in the early minutes of the game which almost saw an England goal
It was almost the perfect start for England but the ball went straight to the German keeper who made an easy save
Pride of Britain: The Lionesses belt out the National Anthem moments before kick-off in front of Prince William in the crowd
UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin (L) and Britain’s Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, applaud prior to the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final football match between England and Germany
England fans ahead of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium, London, awaiting the historic match
A spectacular opening ceremony from Becky Hill set the stage for the Lionesses to make history at Wembley Stadium
Players of England look on during the warm up prior to the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final match between England and Germany at Wembley Stadium on July 31
Fans in Trafalgar Square, London, before a screening of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final held at Wembley Stadium, London
Tens of thousands of fans had been seen around Wembley Stadium hours before the women’s Euros final as the nation prepared for tonight.
Supporters turned out in force to cheer on the Lionesses by flying England flags, painting their faces red and white and donning Team shirts to cheer on the players as they prepared to face Germany at 5pm.
Excitement was seen throughout the sea of England shirts and flags, blowing horns and clappers.
Many of those attending live and in pubs and bars and live screens set up across the country were in family groups, made up of young women and girls.
Among the crowd was Emma Newman, 21, a student from Whitby, North Yorkshire, who said: ‘It’s a really nice atmosphere, people are just here to see the match and nothing else.
‘It’s right that fans aren’t causing trouble, these women are inspiring and deserve to be supported properly. I just hope they can get the job done.’
Fans were seen waiving England flags as they come to cheer on the Lionesses’ at Boxpark Wembley before the match
An England supporter painted with a red cross and wearing a British flag was seen screaming in delight as she arrived for the final of the Women’s Euro 2020 soccer match between England and Germany at Wembley stadium in London today
Fans arriving at Wembley Way before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final earlier today before the action kicked off at 5pm
A fan is seen wearing a Lionesses’ mask in support of the England team outside the Wembley Stadium before the match
Fans in Trafalgar Square, London, before a screening of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final held at Wembley Stadium
A family prepare to watch the action at Wembley Stadium while the young girl dressed as a lion holds a sign saying the Lionesses’ are ‘roarsome’ and another a woman stands nearby
The Women’s team qualified for their first Euros final since 2009 on Wednesday night, as they demolished Sweden 4-0 at Bramall Lane.
England, who have never won the tournament, played their first and last final at home in 1984.
Back then, some players’ husbands were unable to join the crowd of 2,500 at Luton Town’s Kenilworth Road ground because they could not afford the transport.
The game only had halves of 35 minutes instead of 45 and a smaller ball than that played with by men was used. #
England fans outside Wembley Stadium have been getting louder ahead of the Euro 2022 final. Groups of young women were chanting “It’s coming home”, with fans outside pubs and restaurants joining in.
Young children were also seen leading chants as parents followed close behind. A small scattering of police officers, some on horseback, watched fans in the area ahead of kick-off.
The nearby BoxPark was also packed and noisy, with a performance from pop group from S Club 7. Chelsea Women’s football manager Emma Hayes was urging crowds to chant and cheer louder.
England fans made of girls are pictured outside the stadium before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium
Fans at Newcastle’s Central Park watching the Women’s England football team The Lionesses in the Euro 2022 Final against Germany today. Pictured: Lia Harker aged 20 from County Durham
Wembley Stadium reflected in the sunglasses of an England fan prior to the UEFA Women’s Euro England 2022 final match between England and Germany
England fans are pictured racing with the nation’s flag today outside the stadium before the match kicks off at 5pm
Pictured left to right: Anna Benham, Laura Whitfield, Lia Harker and Megan Crystal watching the Women’s England football Euros final at Newcastle’s Central Park
Fans cheer at Boxpark Wembley before the kick off at 5pm when England faces Germany in the Women’s Euro 2022 final
England fans hold up a sign saying ‘bend it like Peckham FC’ as they are pictured inside the stadium before the match
England fans pose for a photo on Wembley Way ahead of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium today
England fans Gracie May, 8, and Amelia Lee, 6 pose on Wembley Way before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley
A woman holds a sign saying English professional footballer Beth Mead is ‘on fire’ and saying ‘your defence is terrified’ among several women also holding up England fans before the kick off with Germany
Fans gather for England v Germany in the Women’s Euro 2022 at Boxpark Wembley before the match
England fans hold up a ‘GOAL!’ sign in the stands before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium, London
An England fan all dressed up before Women’s Euros final at Wembley Stadium in London today
England fan Edith, 11, poses on Wembley Way before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final of England v Germany
A mother and daughter who are attending the final at Wembley together said the England team’s success has ‘helped grow’ women’s football.
Childminder Helen Charlesworth, from Orpington, Kent, said her daughter Darcey, 22, had enjoyed football from the age of eight and started playing with boys as there were no girls’ teams around.
She said: ‘I’m feeling nervous but excited. When we got the tickets last year it was a dream that England would be in the final and now it’s come true.
‘To be at a home tournament is amazing. The team is so strong and there is a real team spirit about them.
‘The fact that the women’s game is growing is amazing. This tournament has definitely helped grow the game and support for it,’ Ms Charlesworth added.
Two girls sit in the stands as they get ready to cheer on the Lionesses at 5pm at Wembley Stadium, London
Supporters gather to watch the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final football match being played at Wembley Stadium between England and Germany, at the fan zone in Trafalgar Square
An England fan screams in support prior to the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final match between England and Germany at Wembley Stadium
A man holds a little girl on his shoulders as she holds a flag for the England team while also having her face painted at Wembley today
England fans outside the stadium before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium
Up north, locals flocked into Newcastle’s Central fan zone to watch the Women’s England team take on Germany and were pictured in high spirits donning England shirts and flags.
Anna Benham, 30, an administrator from Newcastle said: ‘I’ve watched every single game and I’m excited for the final. It’s really great to see the support and how the country has got behind them.
‘I’ve came into the centre because it’s a fantastic atmosphere and we can all celebrate together when we win.’
Leah Harker, a 20-year-old sports science student from County Durham said: ‘I’m really excited for the game, I’ve been following along the entire tournament. It’s a really great atmosphere.
‘We’re going to bring it home today. It’s great to see women’s football leading the way and that people are getting behind it.
‘It’ll mean a lot to some people if the women can win the Euros after the men couldn’t.’
England fans in the stands holding match items before the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final at Wembley Stadium, London
Ayuma and Liane, right, kiss as they gather in the fan zone in Trafalgar Square to watch on a big screen
England fans in Trafalgar Square, London before a screening of the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 final held at Wembley Stadium
Fans arrive this morning to the UEFA Womens Euro 2022 Final football match between England and Germany at Wembley Stadium, England
Jake Brown, a 24-year-old engineer from Newcastle said: ‘I watch every England game so I’m looking forward to the final.
‘It’ll be a really good result, I refuse to believe in defeat. It doesn’t matter that it’s women’s football to me. It’s football and it’ll still be a good game.
‘We came out last year for the men’s final and it was a great day so today should also be great.’
Charlotte Glass, a 23-year-old stay at home mother from Newcastle said: ‘I can’t wait for the game.
‘We came out to watch it with everyone else as it’s so much better than watching it from home.
‘We did something similar for the men’s Euros last year and it was great. I really hope they win.
‘If they do, more people will get into women’s football which would be great to see. People are already supporting it more after their results this year.’