Prime Minister Gordon Brown has stated that Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has been informally approached to lead an all-Britain squad in 2012 when the games come to London. The Prime Minister is hoping to see both a men’s and women’s team fielded in the Olympic tournament. In the past, Britain has not entered because the four home countries – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – compete separately in other international tournaments such as the World Cup. The Prime Minister has held talks with FIFA president Sepp Blatter hoping to secure this compromise for the London-based games. After, the home nations’ football associations will have to agree to the all-Britain idea.
If this squad is allowed, Sir Alex will then be formally approached. Ferguson is skeptical that an all-Britain squad will be confirmed by Great Britain’s four home nations. During United’s preseason tour in South Africa, he stated,
“I’m not sure they (the different national associations) would allow it,” Sir Alex continued, “Countries have their own identity, their own patriotism. It has been mooted for a number of years by FIFA at the World Cup that Great Britain has a team. It would be impractical in that sense. Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, even England, all have their own identities, so I don’t think it is a starter.”
Currently, reports from the four home nations seem to echo Sir Alex and this team looks unlikely to materialize.