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Last Updated: Saturday, 26 March, 2005, 15:07 GMT
Brown prefers football to cabinet
Gordon Brown
The chancellor is a lifelong Raith Rovers fan
Chancellor Gordon Brown has said he would rather watch a football match than attend a cabinet meeting.

Mr Brown was appearing on television sports programme Soccer AM.

He told of his love for his home team of Raith Rovers, which goes back to his youth when he used to sell programmes so he could get in free at half-time.

The chancellor said following Scotland to the World Cup had "not been the most enjoyable thing" but the atmosphere was "absolutely brilliant".

He said he was in Spain when Scotland played Brazil and in Italy when they beat Sweden.

Mr Brown appeared on the Sky Sports show, presented by Tim Lovejoy and Helen Chamberlain, in a slot called "Things I know about football".

I watched a number of games with the Prime Minister - but not an England-Scotland game - in his flat in Downing Street
Gordon Brown

He said: "I know there have been some great goals in the World Cup that everybody will never forget. I saw Archie Gemmill on TV when he scored in Argentina against Holland, and that was a brilliant solo goal."

The chancellor said that he had persuaded other ministers - and even Prime Minister Tony Blair - to watch football when it was on TV.

He said: "I know that no matter where I am in the world, I'd never miss a game.

"If there was a game on TV and it was there to see I'd be watching it.

"Usually I'd be persuading another finance minister to come and watch it with me."

'Absolutely brilliant'

He added: "I watched a number of games with the Prime Minister - but not an England-Scotland game - in his flat in Downing Street.

"We sort of trade jokes about different players, about how good they are and how bad they are.

"I know that when people ask me are there any similarities between running a football club - which I would have liked to have done - and managing the economy... in both cases you have to avoid own goals.

"I know that lots of cabinet ministers are interested in football and watch matches.

"If I had the choice between a football match and a cabinet meeting, I would choose a football match."

In step with Archie's wonder goal
26 Mar 01 |  Scotland

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