I was pleased to read Early Day Motion 1882, relating to the UEFA Nations League Finals in 2019. I wholeheartedly congratulated Gareth Southgate last summer after England’s exceptional World Cup performance in Russia, reaching the semi-finals of the tournament for the first time since 1990.
The country came together under the banner of the three lions, and that was wonderful to see. The football team reignited a united passion in the game that had laid dormant for far too long.
In light of the summer’s excitement, I note that England have succeeded (again) and qualified for the finals of the UEFA Nations League, after beating both Spain and Croatia in qualifying. There is a very real chance that England could win a major football tournament for the first time since 1966, and it is within the scope of the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to list the upcoming fixtures and televise them on a universally accessible channel. The matches in the tournament have hitherto been the domain of pay-per-view Sky Sports, but I agree with the EDM’s argument that these events will grip the public imagination and broadcasting them is in the national interest. These games will not just be for football fans, but for all English people who want to see our nation compete at the highest level of sport.