Gareth Southgate criticises proposed documentary about England players’ partners at Qatar World Cup


‘It’s not my cup of tea’: Gareth Southgate criticises proposed documentary about England players’ partners at Qatar World Cup as he looks to avoid distractions… and brands the term ‘WAGs’ disrespectful

  • Gareth Southgate has criticised plans for a documentary on players’ partners
  • Reports suggest the docu-series could follow partners at the Qatar World Cup 
  • Southgate added that he feels that the term ‘WAGs’ is disrespectful 

England manager Gareth Southgate has revealed that he isn’t supportive of a proposed new documentary focusing on his players’ partners.

Southgate was commenting following reports that the partners of some England players had been approached to be part of a Netflix docu-series about their lives that would see them followed during the World Cup in Qatar later this year.

In addition, Southgate stated that he feels the term ‘WAGs’ is disrespectful. 

Gareth Southgate has criticised plans for a documentary focusing on his players’ partners

Dani Dyer, the girlfriend of West Ham star Jarrod Bowen, has reportedly been approached about the documentary

Dani Dyer, the girlfriend of West Ham star Jarrod Bowen, has reportedly been approached about the documentary

Luke Shaw's partner Anouska Santos has also been contacted regarding the documentary

Luke Shaw’s partner Anouska Santos has also been contacted regarding the documentary

Southgate feels the documentary could prove to be a distraction for the squad in Qatar

Southgate feels the documentary could prove to be a distraction for the squad in Qatar

Southgate was eager to stress that he wants to avoid any possible distractions in Qatar.  

‘Well, not my cup of tea, really,’ Southgate said of the proposed documentary.

‘I’d be surprised if the group of players we’ve got would have an interest in that because they’ve wanted to focus on football.

‘The focus in Russia and last summer was all about the players and everything that they do. We’ve never had any issues.’

Reports suggest that Jack Grealish's girlfriend Sasha Attwood could appear in the docu-series

Reports suggest that Jack Grealish’s girlfriend Sasha Attwood could appear in the docu-series

According to The Sun, Dani Dyer, the girlfriend of West Ham star Jarrod Bowen, has been approached about the documentary.

Others contacted include Jack Grealish’s girlfriend Sasha Attwood plus Luke Shaw’s partner Anouska Santos. 

Southgate has been praised previously for creating a strong sense of unity among the squad at tournaments.

During his time in charge Southgate has helped to foster something resembling a club environment in the England setup; something that was sorely lacking in the past when different factions, including players from rival clubs, often struggled to gel.  

England are looking to build on reaching the final of Euro 2020 and the semi-finals of the 2018 World Cup. 

Despite not being fond of plans for a documentary, Southgate stressed that it is important for players to feel welcome, which would include their families being involved.  

Southgate said: ‘We like to involve the families. We think it’s important that the players’ partners…I actually think the term ‘WAGs’ is quite disrespectful. It’s their partners and family, so I don’t like the term.

‘But we want them to feel welcome, we invited them into the hotel when we could in Russia – mums, dads and kids.

England captain and Tottenham striker Harry Kane with his partner Katie Goodland

England captain and Tottenham striker Harry Kane with his partner Katie Goodland

Manchester United and England defender Harry Maguire with his partner Fern Hawkins

Manchester United and England defender Harry Maguire with his partner Fern Hawkins

‘It’s a great feeling when you’ve the kids in especially, it changes the dynamic of the hotel. We couldn’t do that last year because of Covid.

‘It’s one big family so I think everybody recognises that part of what we do has been very good over the last couple of years.’

Southgate’s immediate focus is on attempting to secure England’s first win of their Nations League campaign when they take on Hungary on Tuesday.

England will be looking for revenge following their 1-0 defeat away to the same opponents earlier this month, which was followed by draws against Germany and Italy.

Southgate’s side are currently bottom of Group A3 and are at risk of suffering relegation to League B. 

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