Huw Edwards backs Gareth Bale after criticism over acceptance of MBE
Broadcaster Huw Edwards has defended fellow Welshman Gareth Bale from criticism over his decision to accept an MBE from the Queen.
Wales captain Gareth Bale had said that he was “deeply humbled” after being awarded an MBE for services to football and charity in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.
The sentiment however put him at odds with some members of Wales’ supporter base, after the FAW had emphasised its Welsh nationalist credentials in the past, including hiring anti-monarchist singer Dafydd Iwan to inspire fans before matches.
However, Huw Edwards, who fronted the Queen’s Jubilee coverage on the BBC yesterday, said that he was only surprised that Gareth Bale only merited the second-lowest honour, under an OBE and Knighthood.
“He’s a superb ambassador for Wales and it’s surely his right to accept recognition,” Huw Edwards said.
“As a journalist who’s covered honours lists for many years, I’m just puzzled by the level of his award.”
Gareth Bale became the first player from any of the nations of the UK to win the Champions League on five occasions when Real beat Liverpool in Paris on Saturday – his final involvement for the Spanish club.
He also inspired Wales to qualification for the 2016 and 2020 European Championships, and will lead the way in their World Cup play-off final on Sunday.
Bale donated over one million euros to hospitals in Wales and Spain in April 2020 in the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic, and has also supported other charities in his home country.
Bale said: “Receiving an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday honours list is a very proud moment for my family and I.
“To be given this news as we prepare to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee makes it feel even more special.
“I joined a football academy at the age of nine, so the sport is a defining part of my identity. I recognise the privilege of being able to do what I love, and for all of the incredible moments, experiences, achievements and memories football has given me. I hope I have been able to give just as much back.
“Football is my whole life and I am deeply humbled to be recognised by the Queen.”
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Here in Madrid 90% of people didn’t know what Wales was 10 years ago or mixed it up with Scotland, Ireland etc. Bale changed that for many. Priceless and more effective than an expensive marketing campaign. If you want people to visit Wales or invest the first step is awareness that it exists. There are RM supporters the world over who multiply this effect.
Still haven’t forgiven RM for beating LFC, mind
Despite the press predictably whipping up some anti-Bale sentiment most Madridistas I know recognise his outstanding contributions in key games.
Fair play that is probably the first positive comment re Gareth come out of Madrid for years! People have really short memories, your example liverpool what a goal, and his length of the field run and goal to win the Spanish cup! For me without the finest British export of all time
Sorry I’m being an idiot again. Ignore me!
No don’t ignore me! I crave attention
We’re hours away from a massive game so let’s not create a needless distraction for our playing group please.
What binds us is Welsh football, an independent football nation, with a desire for Cymru/Wales and our culture to be seen positively on the world stage, and for our nation be the best it can be. Might be slightly different views about what that means but we say “together stronger” and that message has taken us further than we could have imagined.
Hardly surprising! Those in the Establishment will always cover each other’s backs. Huw is entrenched in that Brit Royalist tradition. Just so disappointing and disheartening to see Gareth being sucked in to this Union Jack jamboree.
Until the system is smashed then making use of it to raise further funds for NHS Wales and FAW is a legitimate exercise.
It does appear that you are buying into the false importance of it all more than 99% of the populace, why is that? It is a bauble and how it is used is what matters.
Yn union fel y mae Cymry (o ddosbarth arbennig) wedi bod yn ei ddefnyddio ers y Tuduriaid – er eu mantais bersonol eu hunain.
You got that last bit wrong, or at least N.C have — it’s Welsh football fans, or a section of the fan base, that is pro independence. The Welsh F.A have managed to stimulate and benefit from the identity and good for them. You are spot on in your earlier observation about the mix of the squad. I suspect that Grannies have played an important part in making the squad what it is today
Ben Davies and Aaron Ramsey are welsh speakers. And in the sporting world you’ll find ‘grannies’ play a part in making squads what they are everywhere – just ask our irish friends 😉.
When those “grannies” had to cross the border to give birth it’s hardly surprising. I wouldn’t like to be the one to tell a squad member he’s not Welsh.
If Gareth Bale was English he’d have been knighted. Disappointing that he doesn’t realise he’s been slighted.
A real slight is a BEM for Joy Amman Davies onetime musical director ot the Morriston Orpheus a Welsh institution that can be compared to the Halle Orchestra in England and well worth an OBE(if you accept the Honours System).
This comment is 💯 on the mark – the showering of BEMs and MBEs across Wales compares comparison with colonial awards given to the mother country awardees.with OBEs and ‘above’ ⬆️ far more typical for sports and entertainment folk…… If GB accepts this then that’s fine for him and his family and nought to do with the rest of us. The Welsh Gvt remains locked in a world 🌎 of St Davids Awards 🏅 unknown to 95 per cent of the population and should put up or 💥up. Mark D should ask pal Lord DET who must be our nations… Read more »
Despite the controversy Bale is no surprise most sportsmen accept honours,however Gwyneth Lewis is a surprise,most intellectuals need a knighthood(Damehood?) before they kiss the ring.
Beth yw “Bootlickers” yn Gymraeg?
Well I ofyn yr Arglwydd DET 🤫
There will be further attempts by the Britnat hierarchy to put us off qualifying for the World Cup but there is plenty of time from Monday onwards to talk about this issue. If Gareth decides to return the award, he can do that after the requirement to be fully focussed on Sundays’ game.
The Britmedia is openly hostile to us. We are a distraction, an annoyance, and upset their Britnat narrative. As far as they are concerned “we” have already qualified, in the guise of England. They can have their cake and eat it, by having England there and showing their magnanimity by cheering on Ukraine.
Gareth is still young enough to achieve even more, and then he will get further honours.
What about the welsh sportsmen and women who take part in the olympics under a flag on which their country isnt even represented? Never see them criticised 🤔 As i recall gareth bale declined to be part of the GB football team at the 2012 olympics
Despite Welsh fans’sincere opinions you can be 95% certain that he did not play for GB because he had a bad back.
Incorrect – he had no interest in playing for them https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/olympics-gareth-bale-reveals-why-he-didnt-1182013.amp
Well deserved by Gareth. He has been a fantastic ambassador and this is recognition for that.
Hi Phil. Another of your female alter egos?
I’m flattered you like my name so much. But a little creeped out too.
The WRU takes advantage of the residency rule.
Gareth Bale should have gracefully turned down the MBE. But unfortunately he’s accepted a peanut from the organ grinder British establishment.
All these sheep fanciers accept all the handouts/bail outs England provides but lo and behold someone accepting an award from the Queen!
Remind us how much England is in debt…..you dont offer any bailout whatsoever….
England is actually stealing our funding and our taxes and as regards “sheep fanciers” you should look at court records dating back several hundred years. I had access to a dataset some years back on crime and punishment. Being Welsh I thought I would test the veracity of England’s famous xenophobic slur for a laugh. I no longer have access to it, but following a quick and dirty filter by court (as a proxy for nationality) and crime, then Sum up the totals, it was England who punished more cases of bestiality per capita every century since the 1700s. The… Read more »
It’s sad that Gareth Bale is happy to bend the knee to QEtL. But it is his choice and I think we should respect it, even if we disagree with it.
Recently some regular posters expressed exclusionary views which shocked me.
The choice is the same in both cases:-
1. Can you support people you disagree with on some things?
2. Is the matter too important to you to overlook?
In Gareth Bale’s case, he has proven time and again that he is a proud and loyal Cymro.
I think I can handle him being willing to accept a shiny thing from the Queen.
(Signed, the real Llinos. Not Phil dressing up as me)
Oooh I’d give Gareth Bale an MBE
A pat on the head from the Mother Country is the pinnacle of aspiration for our best and brightest. Utterly sickmaking.