133 complaints to BBC about pro-English bias at Euros final
The BBC received over 100 complaints from football fans about pro-English bias in their coverage of the Euro 2020 final.
The 113 fans thought that the coverage of the final, which England lost against Italy, was too skewed towards the hosts.
Former England players Gary Lineker, Alan Shearer, Frank Lampard and Rio Ferdinand fronted coverage of the final.
The BBC responded by pointing out that coverage of Wales and Scotland’s games had been similarly fronted by pundits from those teams.
“This year, our Euro team features a line-up of England, Scotland, and Wales experts, including Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand, Micah Richards, Alex Scott, Jermaine Jenas, Mark Hughes, Ashley Williams, Robbie Savage, James McFadden and Shelley Kerr,” they said.
“We are proud of the expertise and experience that our team are bringing to football fans across the UK, and don’t agree that our line-up shows any bias towards any one team.
“‘We appreciate that not everyone will enjoy every one of our presenters, pundits, or commentators, but we are proud of the range of talent and expertise our Euros 2020 team bring to our coverage.”
England however wasn’t the only nation to draw complaints that shows were biased in their favour, with the Telegraph earier complaining that coverage of Wales’ games were too biased towards them.
Coverage of Wales’ game against Turkey amounted to “one-eyed cheerleading” according to the Telegraph newspaper, which condemned the BBC for “inflicting” Robbie Savage onto their screens.
“This analysis was less a considered breakdown of Rob Page’s tactics than an exercise in one-eyed cheerleading that some cyclops would consider excessive,” Daniel Schofield, who is billed as the paper’s rugby reporter, wrote.
“To be clear this is not Savage’s fault. ‘Paschun’ and the wearing of heart on his sleeve like cufflinks is as much part of his brand as his suspicious all-year round tan. Instead it is the BBC who must bear responsibility for inflicting Savage upon our ears.
“Putting Savage on co-commentary and expecting dispassionate erudite analysis is like giving a Rottweiler a bunny rabbit and hoping they become friends. This is the deliberate direction of travel, not just from the BBC but from ITV, Sky and BT Sport.
“From celebrating a five-yard pass to disputing every decision that went against his team, Savage did a grand job of embodying the emotions of every Wales supporter watching the game.”