London tube station renamed ‘Gareth Southgate’
Piccadilly line station fitted with new signage to honour England manager
A north London tube station has been renamed ‘Gareth Southgate’ in tribute to the England football manager’s inspiring World Cup performance.
Southgate station, on the Piccadilly line, will be known as Gareth Southgate station until Tuesday night, as part of a commercial partnership between Transport for London and Visa.
Photos of the rebranded station show new London Underground roundels bearing the new name in pride of the place on the platform.
Mark Wild, managing director of London Underground at TfL said: “We’re delighted to be able to show our appreciation to Gareth and the team by renaming the station in his honour.”
The official name change follows distinctly more amateur efforts during the tournament, when some overexcited England fans “took it upon themselves to rename Southgate station after the manager by writing ‘Gareth’ above the station's Tube sign”, says Sky News.
With the temporary signage now in place, “commuters and football fans across London are encouraged to share their pictures and videos on social media using the hashtag #SouthgateSelfie”, London Loves Business reports.
The fanfare around the renamed station contrasts with the “muted reception” which awaited Southgate and his squad as they touched down in the UK yesterday afternoon.
A crowd of around 400 fans defied police advice to stay away from Birmingham Airport, lining up along the barbed wire security fence to watch the team disembark from the chartered flight which had carried them home from St Petersburg, The Guardian reports
In contrast to the grand open-top bus parade awaiting the returning Belgian squad in Brussels, England players leaving the airport in a convoy of Mercedes-Benz cars were greeted by “a smattering of flag-waving supporters”.