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12th Sep 2022

Eton College condemned for ignoring FA’s ban on football

Callum Boyle

An image showed Eton College playing a game

Eton College have been condemned for playing two football matches despite the Football Association imposing a ban on football across all levels following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

The FA confirmed on Friday that all games in the UK would be postponed as a mark of respect to Her Late Majesty, who passed away on Thursday.

But Britain’s most famous public school, where the Prince of Wales and Duke of Sussex studied, were spotted playing against Rossall School just hours after all games were postponed.

A now-deleted tweet from Rossall School’s Twitter account showed the two teams lining up and conducting a minute’s silence before kick-off.

Peter Daly, who runs men’s football team Talking Toffees FC hit out at the school for choosing to go ahead with the game.

“Whilst kids up and down the country were unable to play football this weekend, it seems the same rules don’t apply for Eton,” he told the Telegraph.

“It’s the latest example of how the privileged have complete disregard for the rules we’re all supposed to follow.”

Julian Knight MP, who is the chairman of the Digital, Culture, Media & Sport select committee labelled the public school’s actions as “embarrassing.”

He said: “It seems very strange that Eton choose to play on while millions across the country have been denied playing or watching games. This is a rather embarrassing episode for Britain’s most famous public school.”

Eton have since responded to the backlash. They said: “All at Eton College mourn the death of Her Majesty the Queen, remember with gratitude her extraordinary service and offer their deepest sympathy and condolences to the Royal Family.

“Two friendly football games were played with Rossall School on Saturday. A minute’s silence was observed by players and spectators beforehand.

“These trial games formed part of the school’s pre-season training programme and it was understood that they were not covered by the FA postponement as they were not FA fixtures.”

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