Man Utd icon left with egg on his face as England progress to Euro 2024 semi-finals

Bukayo Saka was criticised by a Man Utd legend for his England performances at Euro 2024 (Image: Getty)

Manchester United icon Peter Schmeichel has been left looking silly by Bukayo Saka after the England winger’s match-winning Euro 2024 performance against Switzerland. Schmeichel was critical of Saka after the last-16 win over Slovakia and claimed that using the Arsenal star on the right wing was not working.

Saka scored a stunning equaliser against Switzerland before calmly converting his penalty in the subsequent shootout triumph. The 22-year-old was one of the players who missed during the Euro 2020 final defeat against Italy but looked nerveless this time around.

His excellent performance came just days after former United goalkeeper Schmeichel said that Saka’s presence in the England team was ‘not working’, and that Cole Palmer was a better option on the right wing.

“I said this before. Gareth Southgate, he’s got a long, long, long think coming now. There are obvious things that don’t work,” Schmeichel said on Fox Australia after England underwhelmed against Slovakia.

“I don’t think Saka works for them. I think it was much, much better when Palmer came on and played on that side. They had much more joy [and it] was much more natural when he plays over there.

Saka tried, tried, tried, and okay, he got moved over to left-wing-back.”

Saka exorcised the demons that remained after he missed the crucial penalty in the Euro 2020 final against Italy three years ago. He was happy to embrace the pressure of stepping up to take a penalty for England in a crunch shootout.

“I think for me it’s something I embrace,” Saka said afterwards.

“You can fail once but you have a choice whether you put yourself in that position again or not. I’m a guy who is going to put myself in that position. I believed in myself.

Peter Schmeichel was critical of Bukayo Saka and England after they beat Slovakia (Image: Getty)

“When I saw the ball hit the net, I was a very happy man. I’m not going to be focusing on the past. That’s done. I can only focus on now and taking a penalty.

“Of course I know there’s a lot of nervous people watching, my family included and in the crowd. But I kept my cool and I scored.”

England will play against the Netherlands in the Euro 2024 semi-final on Wednesday. The winner will take on either Spain or France in the final in a week’s time.