Boris Johnson rules out public holiday for English Euro heroes


England players are dejected after their Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy on penalties at Wembley Stadium in London. (PENNSYLVANIA)

Boris Johnson has ruled out having a public holiday to celebrate England’s Euro 2020 squad.

Downing Street said a public holiday was not being considered to celebrate England’s arrival in the final, where they lost to Italy on penalties on Sunday night.

The Prime Minister’s official spokesperson said on Monday: “We will discuss with the FA to identify an appropriate way for the Prime Minister to thank the players and coaching staff for their efforts.

“But a holiday is not something that is contemplated.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson during the UEFA Euro 2020 Final at Wembley Stadium, London.  Picture date: Sunday July 11, 2021.

Boris Johnson during the Euro 2020 final on Sunday night at Wembley. (PENNSYLVANIA)

There had been pressure on Johnson to give the country a public holiday if England won the final.

The team lost to Italy on penalties after the game ended 1-1 after extra time.

A petition on Parliament’s website to grant the nation a public holiday if England wins the final has reached more than 364,000 signatures.

Watch: Gareth Southgate condemns ‘unforgivable’ racist abuse against England players

After England’s semi-final victory over Denmark last week, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “I don’t want to anticipate the outcome of Sunday’s game.

“It is clear that we want England to go all the way and win the final and then we will set our plans in due course.

“We hope that when England wins we will lay out our plans.”

Instead of eagerly awaiting a public holiday, the nation comes to terms with the aftermath of a headline-grabbing final for all the wrong reasons.

There has been widespread condemnation of the racist online abuse of three black England players who missed penalties in Sunday’s shootout.

The social media pages of Marcus Rashford, Jadon Sancho and Buyako Saka have all been targeted by online trolls posting racist abuse.

Johnson has condemned the abuse but has been criticized by football specialist Gary Neville for failing previously to condemn people who booed England players for kneeling before matches.

The three players have received a deluge of messages of support from fans, politicians, Southgate, the England squad, the Football Association, UEFA and the Duke of Cambridge.

Watch: Gary Neville slams Boris Johnson after racist abuse against England players

Metropolitan Police said they would investigate “offensive and racist” social media posts directed at members of the England football team after the match.

In a tweet, the force said: “We are aware of a number of offensive and racist comments on social media directed at footballers after the Euro 2020 final.

“This abuse is completely unacceptable, it will not be tolerated and it will be investigated.”

Soccer Football - Euro 2020 - Final - Italy v England - Wembley Stadium, London, Great Britain - July 11, 2021 England's Marcus Rashford and Jadon Sancho prepare to become Pool substitutes via REUTERS / Carl Recine

England players Jadon Sancho, left, and Marcus Rashford were victims of racist abuse online after the Euro 2020 final (Reuters)

Twitter said it proactively deleted more than 1,000 posts in the past 24 hours, which violated its policy and also took swift action to permanently suspend a number of accounts.

“The heinous racist abuse directed at England players last night has absolutely no place on Twitter,” a Twitter spokesperson said.

Facebook, owner of Instagram, said Monday: “No one should have to face racist abuse anywhere, and we don’t want it on Instagram.

“We quickly removed comments and accounts pointing to abuse against England footballers last night and will continue to take action against those who break our rules.”

Metropolitan Police made 49 arrests across London as part of their final euro operation, and 19 officers were injured in violent clashes.


Comments are closed.