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It's coming home: England's World Cup anthem on defeat, nostalgia and hope

Everybody including Singer Justin Timberlake to Prince Harry, are cheering England's football team with this rallying cry

Ravi Prakash Kumar 

It's coming home: England's World Cup anthem on defeat, nostalgia and hope

The catchphrase is all over the internet and the song has become United Kingdom's chartbuster after 22 years since its release. The royal bands of recently performed the rendition of the song, which has left UK obsessed ever since the World Cup campaign.

If you are yet to come across or still clueless what the hashtag 'It's Coming Home' on your social media newsfeed means, then, we can start all over from Stone Age for you. Just kidding.

Everybody including Singer to Prince Harry, are cheering England's football team with this rallying cry.

The refrain 'It's coming home' finds its inception in 1996. The song was official anthem for the English team which was about to host European Championship, its first major tournament since the World Cup 1966.


Bobby Charlton-led English football team had won 1966 World Cup when England hosted the championship. Two comedians, Frank Skinner and along with the band Lightning Seeds, penned the lyrics of the single, 'The Three Lions: It's Coming Home'.

The phrase, 'coming home' refers to disputed English claim to be the spiritual home of the modern football. Fifa, Football international governing body, buttress England's claim that the football, as it is played today was invented in England in 1863.

The video song has its own moments of hope, despair and nostalgia. The song starts with the belief that the long wait will finally be over this time when England hosts the championship.

Why does it bother Southgate?

It is to be noted that semi-finalist England, in 1996, was thrown out of the World Cup by in the penalties. One of the players who missed the decisive penalty was today's England manager Southgate has recently admitted in an interview that he couldn't bear to hear 'Football's coming home' for 20 years before England's run to the semi-finals in Russia. 'Football's Coming Home is a song I couldn't listen to for 20 years, to be honest... but it's nice to hear people are enjoying it again,' he said.

The song also has elements of melancholy where it laments the 'Thirty years of hurt' and the English fan's disappointment over the last three decades from 1966-1996.

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The song also has 'Three Lions on a shirt' in lyrics which holds great historical significance in England's history. It goes back to the 12th century, when the troop's flag was carried on the battlefield to inspire the troops. The Lions characterise the traits of bravery, aggression and valour.

Harry Kane-led England will play first World Cup semi-final in 28 years today, the last time being against West in 1990 – six years before Three Lions was released.

First Published: Wed, July 11 2018. 19:55 IST