How we'll definitely win it, by a 19-year-old who never suffered the heartbreak of Euro 96

THE final? No chance we’ll muff it, says 19-year-old Ryan Whittaker, born six years after England ripped fans’ hearts out in 1996. Here he explains: 

Optimistic? Of course I am. Just look at the way things have been going these last few years.

2017, England qualify top of their group and I start liking the taste of beer. 2018, we reach the semi-finals, my acne clears up and I get off with Charlotte Phelps.

2019, England qualify top with only one loss and I lose my virginity over a very fulfilling weekend with Charlotte’s best mate Sophie. So 2020, delayed by a year, means we’ll win the final and I honestly believe I can talk them into a threesome.

This fantastic summer of my youth, coronavirus vanquished and Stormzy having released an absolute banger with Dave, how can we possibly lose? Like if we did that’d break me forever.

It’s not like you old folk with your memories of Britpop peaking and New Labour rising. That was old and pathetic and you need to get over it. We’re new and thrilling and the world’s on our side.

So I confidently predict England will win tonight, and that my generation will be swept into power and will dismantle all the old political systems and make things brilliant.

Tomorrow night. That’s when my youthful optimism gets confirmed forever and I truly understand how special I am and that the universe cares about me.

You old Euro 96 people don’t get it. Gareth Southgate has stepped up. He will not let us down.

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How to do a 'date' if you’ve never been on one

GOING on a ‘date’ is worrying if all your previous relationships have been based on drunken snogs. Here are the basics of what to do:

Turn up 

A good start to a date is to actually go. The options on Tinder are many, but you shouldn’t just ignore actual human beings because you’re a bit tired and fancy a pizza instead. Even if you’ve ordered chicken wings.

Look good

Greasy, matted hair and a weird beard isn’t a good look for men. For women, make a basic attempt at dressing yourself in outdoor clothes, even if you’ve spent the last 18 months in sweaty pyjamas.

Talk about your achievements as much as possible

You’ve got to make yourself seem impressive. It doesn’t matter if the other person barely has time to speak – keep hammering home interesting facts, such as how you’ve been promoted to deputy logistics manager, or are repairing your motorbike.

Talk about your family 

Anyone on a date wants to know about your family stuff, eg. your sister-in-law is thinking of moving to Worcester. Your mum’s angina is also a topic that will have people hopping into bed with you. The trivia of their nearest and dearest will be dull, but yours is endlessly fascinating.

Discuss sex immediately

Ask if the other person will have sex with you within five minutes of meeting for the first time. If not, leave. Restaurants can be quite expensive, so you’ll have saved at least £15. Also put the free breadsticks in your pocket.

Compliment your date

Everyone likes to be flattered. Try saying things like: ‘You have beautiful arm hair’, ‘I like your large breasts’ or ‘You’ve got a nice face despite being overweight’. If they don’t immediately slap you over your ham-fisted attempts at being nice, they might be marriage material.