BBC responds to criticism over its coverage of Euro 2020 match

·3 min read
Photo credit: Martin Rose - UEFA - Getty Images
Photo credit: Martin Rose - UEFA - Getty Images

BBC One's coverage of Euro 2020 came under heavy scrutiny following the collapse of Danish footballer Christian Eriksen today (June 12).

During his nation's match against tournament debutants Finland, the midfielder needed urgent medical assistance, resulting in the game being temporarily suspended.

Eriksen's wife and teammates were visibly distressed at pitch level as doctors applied CPR and the crowd waited anxiously. Yet the cameras continued to film the harrowing goings-on. The player was since confirmed to be in stable conditions.

Incensed by the BBC not cutting back to the studio sooner, one viewer wrote on Twitter: "BBC cut straight over to Eriksen's paining wife as soon as his teammates blocked them from filming him.."

"The media should know when to turn away/off their cameras. Of what gain is it filming a man gasping for breathe? Speedy recovery Christian Eriksen," and "Shame on the #BBC for continuing to film Christian Eriksen whilst he was fighting for his life, whilst his teammates tried to protect his privacy, as well as filming his wife. Disgusting," read two more reactions.

Photo credit: Wolfgang Rattay - Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: Wolfgang Rattay - Pool - Getty Images

With social media aflame with messages criticising the broadcaster's decision to continue its coverage, an official spokesperson told Digital Spy in a statement: "Everyone at the BBC is hoping Christian Eriksen makes a full recovery. We apologise to anyone who was upset by the images broadcast.

"In stadium coverage is controlled by UEFA as the host broadcaster, and as soon as the match was suspended, we took our coverage off air as quickly as possible."

DS has also reached out to UEFA for comment.

The same statement was then delivered to viewers by BBC presenter Gary Lineker when the game resumed.

He also addressed the backlash by tweeting: "We will be back on air at 7.25 on @bbcone. I understand some of you would have been upset with some of the images shown (we were too).

"Obviously these were the host pictures and out of our control. They should have stayed on a wide of the stadium. Apologies."

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

In a second tweet he later added: "In 25 years of doing this job, that was the most difficult, distressing and emotional broadcast I’ve ever been involved with. Thanks to @cesc4official [Cesc Fàbregas Soler] @AlexScott @MicahRichards for your professionalism, warmth and empathy. Get well soon, Christian Eriksen."

Many other viewers united in praising the BBC team for the way they handled the situation.

"Your coverage was impeccable and totally from the heart," wrote one user on Twitter while another person commented: "@AlexScott total respect for your handling tonight brilliant job"

Many of those watching the live broadcast particularly empathised with Scott's remark about messaging her mum to tell her she loves her.

This month, Digital Spy Magazine counts down the 50 greatest LGBTQ+ TV characters since the Stonewall riots. Read every issue now with a 1-month free trial, only on Apple News+.

Interested in Digital Spy's weekly newsletter? Sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox – and don't forget to join our Watch This Facebook Group for daily TV recommendations and discussions with other readers.

You Might Also Like

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting