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FA Cup semi finals and England international friendly matches should return to Villa Park

Siôn Simon Labour candidate for West Midlands Mayor has today called for FA Cup semi finals and England men’s international friendly matches to return to Villa Park in the heart of the country.

As Mayor, Labour’s Siôn Simon will work with the Football Association and Department of Culture, Media & Sport to bring more elite sport out of London and into the West Midlands.

Lifelong West Bromwich Albion fan and season-ticket holder Siôn Simon said,

“Fans should not have to travel to London to watch the England national team play. Friendly matches should come out of the capital and return to Villa Park.

“The England football team belongs to the whole country and not just London.

“I will work with the FA and Department for Culture, Media and Sport to bring international football back to the West Midlands.

“FA Cup semi finals should return to the heart of the country too.

”Villa Park has played host to memorable FA Cup matches over the years and should play host to them again.”

Siôn Simon has today written to the Football Association, calling on them to work with him if elected as West Midlands Mayor to bring international friendlies and FA Cup semi finals back to Villa Park.

Between 1901 and 2007 Villa Park hosted 55 FA Cup semi finals, more than any other stadium, including the new and old Wembley Stadiums combined.

Villa Park last hosted an international match in 2005 and is the only English ground to host international matches in three different centuries.

Siôn Simon also strongly backs Coventry’s bid to be the UK City of Culture in 2021 and Birmingham’s bid to host the Commonwealth Games in 2026.

England women’s football team plays internationals around the country and this year’s semi finals were played in Solihull and Manchester.

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commented 2017-05-04 11:38:13 +0100
JOHN CALLAGHAN (Why are you shouting?? See, two can play that game…) my point is Mr Simon can claim to support moving England matches to Villa Park all he wants but if his party gets its way there won’t even be an England to have an international team in the first place, committed as they are to the abolition of England.

And I am not a Birmingham City fan. If you think you can mock me by associating me with an unsuccessful team as a way to get at me and undermine my point somehow then you’re wrong. I am a Wolves fan, and that could never work against me. Oh wait…
commented 2017-05-04 09:01:53 +0100
Wow ‘ENGLISH NOTBRITISH, I didn’t realise Sion’s plans to bring international friendlies and FA Cup semi finals back to Villa Park was such an emotive subject. I take back what I said about you and apologise as I can now see that you must be a Birmingham City supporter and wish you all the best against Bristol City. Sion is a local man standing to address local issues, ENGLISH NOTBRITISH (why are you shouting?!) do try to stay on topic and address the proposal. Off to vote, tara a bit!
commented 2017-05-03 12:06:57 +0100
John Callaghan, the stock response I see, in which you fail to address the key thrust of my comment – that Labour are a party of Anglophobes, committed to the balkanisation of England with their “regionalisation” agenda. Why won’t Labour support an English parliament? Why are they, instead committed to the break-up of England into these artificial regions (yet they insist on preserving as whole and undivided Scotland, Wales and N Ireland)?

You ask “Wow ‘ENGLISH NOTBRITISH’, why do I get the feeling you’ve never been to a midlands league football match?”. Maybe that’s your sad attempt to find an angle from which to attack, me without actually addressing my comment via questioning whether I even live in this region, in an attempt to garner a “phhh, I bet he doesn’t even live in this area” from readers. Well, I ask you why you follow an anti-English party like Labour if you hold such (apparent) concern for the welfare of England footy fans.
commented 2017-05-03 07:59:23 +0100
Wow ‘ENGLISH NOTBRITISH’, why do I get the feeling you’ve never been to a midlands league football match, never mind travelling to Wembley to watch England play (not Britain!) as many supporters of Sion have had to do over the years to support their club and national team. Maybe you’re a ‘rugger’ fan ENGLISH NOTBRITISH? (Thought so). The RFU has an even worse record than the FA in bringing matches north of ‘Twickers’, so come on Sion, expand your campaign to getting the RFU to play more internationals at villa park and prove to ENGLISH NOTBRITISH you’re an English man! (With Welsh heritage and, oh, a British passport)
commented 2017-04-30 13:42:53 +0100
I have no doubt that if your party had its way there wouldn’t even be an England national side because England would have been balkanised into “regions”. So you can portray yourself as an English patriot all you want, but I and I hope many others see your party for what it is – an avowedly Anglophobic political party diametrically opposed to the concept of English nationhood.
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