Lord Coe responds after LBC highlights the public don't know names of Team GB stars

22 July 2021, 08:03

By Asher McShane

Lord Coe today told LBC that Team GB boasts "jaw-dropping" talent ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.

LBC asked the public to name three members of Team GB. One member of the public said: "Katarina Thompson Johnson?" But was corrected by LBC's political editor Theo Usherwood who said: "I think it's Katarina Johnson-Thompson."

"Yeah that's it" came the reply.

Another person was asked: "Who is our Steve Ovett this year?" and the public were stumped saying "no idea."

Lord Coe spoke to Nick Ferrari at Breakfast this morning and said: "Well I'm interested in the vox-pop but if you went out on the street and asked name me half the people in the current cabinet you'd get the same type of response.

"It's a challenge and the clear answer to that is we've got some jaw-dropping talent and yeah we do have to work a darn sight harder to get them the profile they are deserving.

"Dina Asher-Smith interestingly is in the top ten most recognisable sports men and women in the planet right now.

"We do need to go out there and sell their talent."

Lord Coe went on to say that it would be the games with the "lowest attendance ever" due to no-one in the stands and no overseas visitors, but he predicted it would be one of the "highest-watched" games.

He said it would be a huge challenge to create a games that is safe for the athletes and safe for the communities where it is being hosted.

"I think the organising committee has done a pretty good job... it's maybe a better job should have been done in explaining to the Japanese people that they were doing everything they could to deliver a safe and secure games.

"I think as we get into the sport people are going to recognise this is the biggest sporting show on earth."

Lord Coe also said he wasn't happy at a social media ban on footage of athletes taking the knee at the games.