Jeremy Corbyn: Gareth Southgate's England are 'fantastic' role models

11 July 2021, 14:05 | Updated: 11 July 2021, 14:26

By Seán Hickey

The former Labour leader applauds Gareth Southgate and the England team for being 'fantastic' role models to 'multicultural, multiethnic' Britain.

"Football is a game of course, it's a sport but it gives girls and boys the chance to learn to support each other, play together as a team, it does an awful lot of good in our communities," Jeremy Corbyn told Tom Swarbrick when asked about his relationship with football.

Read More: King's Cross station evacuated after England fans let of flares ahead of Euro 2020 final

The former Labour leader spoke to Tom as England's mens team prepare for their first major final in 55 years.

Read More: Prince William 'can't believe this is happening' as England gear up for Euros final

Tom asked Mr Corbyn what he thought of the manner in which the England team have conducted themselves in this tournament, referencing their remarkable ability to represent England's multicultural society.

"The way Gareth Southgate has led the team and the way the team have performed and they way they've conducted themselves and shown our multicultural, multiethnic, multilingual society is fantastic. Well done to them."

Read More: David Lammy's stirring call to 'detoxify' UK in wake of England's Euro 2020 success

Read More: Natasha Devon shuts down caller who claims there's 'no racism in this country'

Tom noted there have been "plenty of calls to not boo the Italian national anthem" and wondered whether it is not just part of football to do so.

"I go to Arsenal games and the arsenal supporters spend a lot of time booing Arsenal players" Mr Corbyn quipped, before adding that "when it comes to an international game it's slightly different."

Read More: 'We're in a final and we're here to win': Southgate's message to Italy

He told Tom that "there should be respect to the visiting side and to both teams – it's only the right and proper thing to do, it's not a lot to ask."

The former Labour leader concluded by pointing out the disparity between the top level and grassroots of football, despite all of England's heroes coming from grassroots teams.

Read More: Gareth Southgate now more popular than Churchill as odds slashed on knighthood

"We need to take a fresh chunk of money out of the Premier League and put it into grassroots football," he claimed.

More Tom Swarbrick

See more More Tom Swarbrick

RMT boss declares rail strikes are 'absolutely' a class struggle

RMT boss declares rail strikes are 'absolutely' a class struggle

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch defended the union's strike action this week.

Train strikes until Xmas! Millions face travel misery as rail unions demand 7% pay hike

Worst 'yet to come' for food price rises that could last over a year - Ex-Sainsbury's CEO

Worst 'yet to come' for food price rises that could last over a year - Ex-Sainsbury's CEO

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 19/6 | Watch again

RMT general secretary Mick Lynch defended the union's strike action this week.

Rail workers demand 7% raise as union 'gunning' for strike set to bring misery to millions

UK to take 'most vulnerable' refugees from Rwanda under deal, says scheme's negotiator

UK to take 'most vulnerable' refugees from Rwanda under deal, says scheme's negotiator

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 12/6 | Watch again

Jailed geologist's 15-year prison term is 'worse than a death sentence', say son-in-law

Geologist's 15-year prison term in Iraq 'worse than death sentence', says son-in-law

Queen could block Boris Johnson calling General Election, expert tells LBC

Queen could block Boris Johnson calling General Election, expert tells LBC

Sadiq Khan: Platinum Jubilee is the 'catalyst' for English economic recovery

Sadiq Khan: Platinum Jubilee is the 'catalyst' for English economic recovery

'The City of London is a major drain on productive economic activity in Britain'

'The City of London is a major drain on productive economic activity in Britain'

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 29/05 | Watch again

'Nonsense' to suggest Brexit to blame for surge in inflation, says Dr Liam Fox

'Nonsense' to suggest Brexit to blame for surge in inflation, says Tory MP

Turkey could block Sweden and Finland from joining NATO claims Erdogan ally

Turkey could block Sweden and Finland from joining NATO, claims ex-Erdogan aide

Kwasi Kwarteng said people look at British buildings and “make a judgement” on “our standing in the world”

'We project world standing': Minister defends Govt plans to buy '£20m New York partyhouse'

Swarbrick On Sunday 18/07

Swarbrick On Sunday 15/5 | Watch again