At the door of immortality stand England’s 26 heroes, alongside inspirational leader Gareth Southgate.
All that stands between them and this date with eternal destiny is a 90 minute (or a potentially slightly more harrowing 120 minute) clash with Italy in the Three Lions’ very own colosseum.
The England stars are aiming to become the first set of players to lift a major international trophy of any kind in 55 years, and the first in history to win the European Championship.
It’s probably the best use of the term ‘unprecedented circumstances’ that we’ve heard in the past couple of years.
And so, the England players stand on the edge of glory. But one man in particular could be propelled to brand new levels of reverence. Harry Kane started Euro 2020 slowly, but he has found his feet in the knockout rounds, and is now returning to be the force of nature we all know and love.
The Tottenham Hotspur striker’s goal against Germany in the round of 16 awoke the beast within him, and he has gone on to bag another three in the next two games. His winning goal in the semi-final victory over Denmark placed him in already uncharted territory, becoming the first Englishman to send his nation to a European final.
And on Sunday evening, he has the chance to go one better against Italy.
By scoring in the final and crowning England as Euro 2020 champions, Kane could hit heights of stardom that we’ve never seen before in this country, and would cement his standing as the nation’s greatest ever striker.
Statistically, he’s not far off those acclaims anyway, and it’s only a matter of time until he becomes the nation’s all-time leading scorer. With 38 goals, he is only 15 off the record, and at the rate at which he scores, that shouldn’t take too long.
For the time being, Kane sits sixth in the Three Lions’ list of all-time top scorers, with Wayne Rooney, Bobby Charlton, Gary Lineker, Jimmy Greaves and Michael Owen above him.
Of that quintet, only the great Charlton was not a striker, but he and Greaves did win silverware, bringing football home at World Cup 1966. So, in terms of forwards, Kane is already one of England’s top five.
In terms of talent, many would argue Rooney was one of the most complete footballers England has ever produced, but in the big tournaments (other than Euro 2004) he never truly demonstrated his potential.
Lineker comes close, having been part of the famous England side which reached the World Cup semi-finals in 1990, a tournament which is so fondly remembered by England supporters. But he never scored in a final.
Right now, Kane is on the precipice of becoming a legend for his country. He has won the golden boot at a World Cup, helped England achieve their best World Cup finish since 1990, and now carried the Three Lions into the final of a major tournament for the first time in 55 years.
He is also the joint-highest scorer for England in major tournaments, tied with Lineker on 10 strikes. A winning goal in the Euro 2020 final to officially bring football home would not only put him on top of that pile, but it might just be enough to secure his status as England’s greatest ever striker.