‘Call your boss, you’re not going into work tomorrow’: ITV’s Sam Matterface is likened to 1966 pundit Kenneth Wolstenholme over his rallying cry for England fans to take today off… and supporters have done just that
- Sam Matterface launched into a bizarre monologue ahead of the final whistle
- With England 2-1 up in closing seconds at Wembley, he said ‘do what you want’
- He encouraged ITV viewers to ring bosses and tell them ‘you ain’t coming in’
- It was compared to commentary by 1966 commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme
- England beat Denmark 2-1 to secure a spot against Italy in the Euro 2020 final
- Find out the latest Euro 2020 news including fixtures, live action and results here
England fans last night got an unexpected treat when commentator Sam Matterface said they could ‘have the day off’ after the Three Lions reached the final of Euro 2020.
The clearly elated commentator, 43, launched into an emotive monologue as England closed in on a 2-1 extra-time victory against Denmark in yesterday’s semi-final.
But with the emotions running high his speech spilled into the bizarre, as he encouraged ITV viewers to ring their bosses and take the day off.
He said: ‘I tell you what, if this comes off, you can do what you want tonight. You’ve had a terrible 16-months.
‘Kids you can stay up, don’t you dare go to bed. The rest of you call your boss, you ain’t coming in in the morning.
‘You deserve this, England deserves this. Feel it, ride it. All that pent up emotion which is 50 seconds away.
‘Just try to be safe and follow the rules, or I’m going to be in one hell of a lot of trouble.’
The amusing moment was picked up on Twitter, where fans made tongue-in-cheek comments about not going into work today.
Others drew comparisons to legendary commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme, who famously uttered the immortal words: ‘They think it’s all over… it is now’, after England’s 1966 World Cup win.
One Twitter user said: ‘Phoned my boss to say I’m not coming in to work tomorrow cos Sam Matterface said so. I’m not going in an hour early.’
Commentator Sam Matterface embarked on an emotive post-match monologue as England fans celebrated their 2-1 extra time victory against Denmark last night
Another, Tom Brooks, wrote: ‘Sorry boss, won’t be into work tomorrow because Sam Matterface told me it’s okay.’
Dave Flynn, imitating a conversation between a boss and employee, wrote: ‘Why didn’t you show up for work today? Sam Matterface told me I didn’t have to.’
Another added: ‘So no one is at work tomorrow thanks to Sam Matterface and ITV.’
One Twitter user put: ‘Result. Day off work tomorrow thanks to Sam Matterface.’
Another joked: ‘Sam Matterface single handedly destroying the UK economy by telling everyone not to go to work tomorrow.’
Twitter user, Paddy, added: ‘Well, that’s different! And, according to Sam Matterface, I now have carte blanche to do whatever I want and not to go to work tomorrow. I’m sure those vulnerable people will take care of themselves.’
Others drew comparisons to the legendary commentator Wolstenholme and his famous line from England’s 1966 World Cup final win over Wembley – also at Wembley.
Just as the final whistle was about to blow in that game the commentator said the now immortalised words: ‘Some people are on the pitch… they think it’s all over… it is now!’.
However, the comparisons were not so friendly, with Scotsman columnist Martyn McLaughlin saying: ‘Sam Matterface’s attempts to hit on his Kenneth Wolstenholme moment are lurching from the desperate to the inane.’
Another, writer and broadcaster Carrie Dunn put: ‘Matterface thinks he’s going to be the new Wolstenholme.’
And another Twitter user added: ‘Love how Sam Matterace went for his Kenneth Wolstenholme moment in the closing seconds and ended up at Charlie Nicholas.’
It comes as England’s footballers ended their 55-year wait for a major final last night – and are just 90 minutes from Euro 2020 glory after a nerve-shredding extra-time win over Denmark at Wembley.
More than 66,000 people – joined by Prince William, Boris Johnson and a who’s who of celebrities – packed the stands in Britain’s biggest post-pandemic crowd.
And those fans played a crucial role as they roared their Three Lions heroes home – the 2-1 semi-final win coming by way of a Harry Kane goal in extra time.
Gareth Southgate’s man now face Italy on Sunday. England won a controversial penalty for a trip on Raheem Sterling and though captain Kane saw his effort saved by Danish keeper Kasper Schmeichel the striker was first to pounce on the rebound, slamming the ball home and sending fans into dreamland.
England are one game from glory, as they now face a final with Italy at Wembley on Sunday after beating Denmark 2-1 last night
Kane celebrates with team mates after scoring their side’s second goal during the UEFA Euro 2020 match
Twenty tension-filled minutes later, the final whistle sounded and Wembley – and millions watching at home – burst into a national chorus of Neil Diamond’s Sweet Caroline, with the PM and wife Carrie among those joining in.
It sets up that final against Italy, back at Wembley on Sunday evening. But for the fans, last night was all about ending the decades-long wait for a first final since the 1966 World Cup.
As the victory was confirmed, shirtless fans packed into London’s Trafalgar Square fan zone sprayed beer over each other, singing ‘It’s Coming Home’ and praising manager Gareth Southgate’s team.
Vic Richards, 22, from Croydon, south London, said: ‘I’m still trying to compute what happened, I’ve never seen England make a final.
‘It’s beautiful, it’s unbelievable, I love this country, the players gave it their all. This is an historic occasion, we may never see this again – now we can start to believe.’
Other fans collapsed onto the ground crying with joy or partied on the tables. Oliver Ways, 28, from Mitcham, said: ‘This time it’s coming home, the momentum is with us, I don’t care what anyone says. I’m so drunk but I don’t care – the game was just how we wanted it.
‘I can’t believe I’m saying this but England are in a final!’
England manager Gareth Southgate celebrates after England beat Denmark in the Euro 2020 semi-final at Wembley
The Duke of Cambridge in the stands during the UEFA Euro 2020 semi-final match at Wembley Stadium
England fans soaked up the atmosphere at Box Park in Croydon last night as England beat Denmark to reach the Euro 2020 final
The atmosphere inside and outside the ground had been rousing and good-natured. England players took the knee before kick-off in support of anti-racism, but no boos could be heard. ITV commentators described the ‘buzz’ and ‘sense of occasion’ which could be felt in the massive stadium.
Pubs across Britain had been packed out for the match, with 6.8million pints expected to be poured, and fans spilled out onto the streets after the final whistle. In London around 20 people were arrested.
Fans blocked roads and clambered over a stranded bus in jubilant scenes before being moved on by police to continue their celebrations.
As the result sank in, Prince William, the FA president, led the congratulations. The Duke had cheered England on alongside wife Kate and son Prince George last week but was forced to watch yesterday’s game alone as the Duchess was isolating after a covid Test-and Trace alert.
But in a tweet from the KensingtonRoyal Twitter account, the couple said: ‘What a game, what a result! A huge team effort @England. The whole country will be behind you on Sunday. #ItsComingHome.’
Mr Johnson wrote on Twitter after the game: ‘Tonight @England played their hearts out. What a fantastic performance from Gareth Southgate’s squad. Now to the final. Let’s bring it home.’
Also congratulating the England victory, Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer tweeted a picture of himself celebrating as he watched the semi-final match on TV, with the hashtag: ‘#ItsComingHome’.
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