As a Liverpool fan I know how much football means to so many people in the UK. It is our national game, and it brings people, communities and nations together. It did just that this week when six of our top clubs considered forming a super league, a move that would only benefit the billionaire owners, whilst being hugely damaging to the remaining clubs and the sport as a whole.
The breakaway league united fans, players, managers and our Government against the plans, and that collective push led to the idea collapsing in just 48 hours. I have to say, Boris Johnson, our Prime Minister, was definitely the man of the match. His immediate action, especially the threat of a “legislative bomb” amongst others, turned the tide. The behaviour of these owners was seriously misjudged, and I know that my colleagues in the Department for Sport (DCMS) will be carrying out a fan-led review, which I am sure will bring about significant new changes.
Football is important at every level of the game, it was not long ago our very own Chichester City FC was lifted into the second round of the FA Cup for the first time in 70 years. Their progress was closely followed by lots of us locally as they represented us on the field. I was particularly proud when they received an FA ‘Special Team Award’ for donating some of the first-round prize money to Bury FC who were removed from the competition for not having sufficient funds.
This week we also legislated for the world’s most ambitious climate change target, which will accelerate our Net Zero efforts. Our new legally binding target will cut emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels. This is a massive commitment that raises the bar ahead of COP26. We also celebrate Earth Day this week, so I’ve written to all our Primary Schools across the Chichester Constituency to encourage them to get involved with the Young Climate Warriors initiative. The aim is to educate children about climate and environmental issues and help them design and implement challenges to help combat climate change. I am looking forward to hearing more about what they come up with.
I will also be doing my first pub tour since the first lockdown this week at The Woolpack Inn, in Fishbourne, this Saturday from noon to 2pm. I will be there to meet anyone who wants to come and ask a question or raise a concern. Please be aware, this will be outside and normal covid-19 measures will be in place – for more information please check my website, www.gilliankeegan.com/meeting-gillian - I look forward to seeing some of you there.