Dyke defends cut-throat gesture

The Bolton News: Greg Dyke insisted his gesture at the World Cup draw was merely 'a piece of humour' Greg Dyke insisted his gesture at the World Cup draw was merely 'a piece of humour'

Football Association chairman Greg Dyke has defended the cut-throat gesture he made at the World Cup draw earlier this month, insisting it was merely "a piece of humour".

Dyke caused a stir at the draw in Brazil on December 6 when he slid his index finger across his throat after England were placed in Group D alongside Italy, Uruguay and Costa Rica.

Many viewed it as a defeatist gesture from a man who admitted earlier this year that he would not expect to see England win a World Cup before 2022.

But the 66-year-old, who replaced David Bernstein as chairman of the FA in July and immediately outlined plans to set up a commission to investigate the recent failures of the national team, insists England can get out of their group next summer - and even go all the way to the final.

Asked if he regretted his actions, Dyke told Sky Sports News: "No. It was a piece of humour. That's me.

"If you want a straight-laced suit, you can have a straight-laced suit. Or you can have someone like me.

"It was an instant reaction. Interestingly, there have been a number of football fans who've come up to me and said 'you're a proper football fan because you felt like we did'.

"Basically, it's quite a difficult draw. That doesn't mean to say we're not going to get through - I think actually we will get through - but it's a tough draw and we ought to recognise that.

"If you can get out of the group, you're four games from winning - and it could happen.

"No-one is going to sit and say we're the favourites, but let's not kid ourselves, we have a chance."

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