Gareth Southgate reveals he avoided ‘It’s Coming Home’ for 15 YEARS after Euro 96 heartbreak but insists there is nothing ‘arrogant’ about song after Baddiel and Skinner were banned from performing at Wembley before final
Gareth Southgate has dismissed claims that the Three Lions song is an example of English arrogance.
UEFA have prevented comedians David Baddiel and Frank Skinner from performing the song, which contains the lyrics ‘It’s coming home’, before Sunday’s Euro 2020 final against Italy, as it is deemed to be ‘too partisan’.
Southgate, however, insisted that the song is an example of English humour, with the lyrics being self-deprecating in relation to the nation’s lack of success over a prolonged period.
Gareth Southgate has insisted that the Three Lions song isn’t an example of English arrogance
The chant has been heard throughout England’s run to the final, although there have been suggestions in some quarters that it is a sign of arrogance.
Southgate, who missed the decisive penalty in England’s Euro 96 semi-final defeat to Germany, added that he previously didn’t want to listen to the song as it was too painful.
Speaking at his pre-match press conference, Southgate said: ‘I didn’t want to listen to it for 15 years as it was too painful. You have to know the English to understand our humour.
David Baddiel (left) and Frank Skinner (right) were prevented from performing the song by UEFA ahead of the final
Southgate says the song’s lyrics are an example of English humour and self-deprecation
‘It’s certainly not arrogance. The lyrics are making fun of ourselves really. It has always appeared at the tournaments. The atmosphere in the ground has been great.’
Southgate also commented on how the atmosphere at Wembley has improved significantly since he first took charge on a temporary basis in 2016.
‘We had people throwing paper aeroplanes three or four years ago, now the energy in the stadium is so important.’
The Three Lions song was initially released by Baddiel, Skinner and the Lightning Seeds in 1996 and has remained a key anthem of the English team in the ensuing period.
At the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where Southgate’s side reached the semi-finals, the chant was frequently sung by England supporters, with Croatia midfielder Luka Modric stating that it was disrespectful.