Rishi Sunak mocked for saying England ‘left absolutely nothing out there’ after World Cup defeat
Rishi Sunak has been mocked for a tweet after England lost the women’s World Cup final 1-0 to Spain.
In a post on Twitter, now known as X, the Prime Minister told the England football team: “You left absolutely nothing out there, Lionesses.”
Senior Labour MP Angela Eagle pointed out that he had muddled what was intended to be a supportive comment about Sarina Wiegman’s side’s efforts in the contest.
“I think the phrase is ‘absolutely everything’ PM,” Ms Eagle tweeted.
Broadcaster Jon Sopel, host of The News Agents podcast, also pointed out the error, saying: “Everything, surely!?”
Shelagh Fogarty, a presenter on LBC, joked that the tweet had been “written by a 16-year-old Spad (special adviser)”.
Conservative Party leader Mr Sunak has faced criticism for not travelling to Sydney, Australia, to watch the final in person.
Former England goalkeeper Pauline Cope expressed her disappointment that Mr Sunak had not attended, while also suggesting that the Prince of Wales, who is president of the FA, should have been at Stadium Australia to watch the match.
Cope, who has 60 England caps and played in the 1995 World Cup, told Times Radio: “Let’s be honest, if it was the men’s World Cup, they would all be here.”
Mr Sunak published an open letter to the Lionesses ahead of kick–off, saying that he would be “watching and cheering” them on.
But fans on Twitter appeared unimpressed, with one remarking “A letter? what a joke”, and another adding: “Big deal… he should be there.”
Asked why he did not travel to Australia, Downing Street pointed to the UK Government being represented at the tournament’s conclusion by Foreign Secretary James Cleverly and Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer.
Cabinet minister Ms Frazer, speaking to the PA news agency ahead of Sunday’s kick-off, said: “I know that the Prime Minister feels very passionately about the women’s game.
“Only about a month or so ago he and I were at 10 Downing Street with the Lionesses, and I know he sent a message to the Lionesses wishing them congratulations and luck today.”
During the second half, with England a goal down to Olga Carmona’s strike in the 29th minute, Mr Sunak tweeted: “We still believe!”.
The post included a picture of him in a pub in his North Yorkshire constituency of Richmond, with the teetotal Prime Minister, surrounded by fellow supporters, wearing a white England home jersey while holding what is thought to be a non-alcoholic drink in his hand.
No 10 did not invite the media to capture the British leader, who supports Southampton FC and is an avid cricket fan, watching the game but a personal photographer at the taxpayers’ expense appeared to be on hand.
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