Official England World Cup songs
- 10 June 2010
- From the section Entertainment & Arts
In the absence of an FA-approved World Cup song this year - after coach Fabio Capello said he wanted to be "fully focused on the football" - we take a look back at official England songs from previous competitions.
MEXICO 1970 - BACK HOME, ENGLAND WORLD CUP SQUAD
The big brass section and raucous, reverb-drenched footballers' choir set the precedent for official England World Cup songs to follow.
Lyrically, Alan Ball, Bobby Moore, Jack Charlton and co rejected the sunnier climes of Mexico and hankered for their fans "back home". The memory of their World Cup win at Wembley four years earlier was no doubt fresh in their minds.
"Back home, they'll be thinking about us, when we are far away. Back home, they'll be really behind us, in every game we play."
The song reached number one. England reached the quarter finals. Alf Ramsey's men were beaten 3-2 by West Germany after extra time. England had been 2-0 up.
SPAIN 1982 - THIS TIME, ENGLAND WORLD CUP SQUAD
Thanks to their failure to qualify in 1974 and 1978, the England World Cup Squad were absent from the charts for 12 years.
Fortunately, the 1982 team - led by Kevin Keegan in both the singing and the haircut department - had a killer chorus to work with for their comeback record. It is still adored by most English boys born in the 1970s.
"This time, more than any other time, this time. We're going to find a way, find a way to get away. This time, getting it all together."
The song reached number two. England reached the second group phase. Ron Greenwood's men were knocked out after goalless draws against Germany and then Spain. Keegan missed an easy header late on against Spain.
MEXICO 1986 - WHOLE WORLD AT OUR FEET, ENGLAND WORLD CUP SQUAD
The squad failed to move on with an old-fashioned identikit outing - complete with brass section and naff vocal line pitched too high for most of the players.
Bryan Robson, Gary Lineker and co were rightly punished when the record failed to reach the top 40.
"We've got the whole world at our feet, there ain't a single team that we can't beat. They'll all be dancing in the street, 'cos we've got the whole world at our feet."
The song reached a pitiful number 66. England reached the quarter-finals. Bobby Robson's men lost 2-1 to Argentina. Maradona scored one of the greatest World Cup goals of all times. He put the other one in with his hand.
ITALY 1990 - WORLD IN MOTION, ENGLANDNEWORDER
The old formula was given the red card as Manchester legends New Order - with the help of Lily Allen's dad Keith - produced the first and only cool England World Cup song.
Housey pianos, electric beats, a catchy chorus and (wisely) minimal input from the England ensemble set the scene for John Barnes - who somehow managed to pull off a rap about football.
"We're playing for England (En-ger-land), we're playing the song. We're singing for England (En-ger-land), arrivederci its one on one."
The rap goes:
"You've got to hold and give, but do it at the right time, you can be slow or fast, but you must get to the line."
The song became England's second number one single. The team reached the semi-finals. Bobby Robson's men lost 4-3 on penalties to West Germany after misses by Stuart Pearce and Chris Waddle. Gazza cried.
FRANCE 1998 - (HOW DOES IT FEEL TO BE) ON TOP OF THE WORLD, ENGLAND UNITED
The first England single without any input from the players.
This collaboration between, among others, the Spice Girls, Lightning Seeds and Echo and the Bunnymen, had a pleasant enough chorus.
But it was always going to suffer in comparison to its exquisite predecessor, World In Motion.
"How does it feel, to be on top of the world, now it's for real, you're on top of the world. We're on the top of the world."
The song reached number nine. England reached the second round. Glenn Hoddle's squad lost 4-3 on penalties to old foes Argentina. David Beckham got sent off. Michael Owen scored a wonder goal.
SOUTH KOREA/JAPAN 2002 - WE'RE ON THE BALL, ANT AND DEC
A fresh-faced Ant and Dec cemented their place in the hearts of the English people with an easy-to-remember ode to the current crop of players.
Awful. Just awful.
"Gerrard to Beckham, Beckham to Heskey, Heskey to Owen, its a goal. We're on the ball, we're on the ball, we're on the ball, we're on the ball."
The song reached number three. England reached the quarter-finals. Sven-Goran Eriksson's team were beaten 2-1 by a 10-man Brazil. Keeper David Seaman got lobbed.
GERMANY 2006 - WORLD AT YOUR FEET, EMBRACE
Embrace's Danny McNamara said he only decided to accept the FA's offer to record a song for England after running the idea past his father.
No doubt Mr McNamara approved of the final offering - a sentimental slice of dad rock that, like England United's 1998 effort, was nice enough.
"With the world at your feet, there's no one you can't beat, yes it can be done. With the world at your feet, there's no height you can't reach, this could be the one."
The song reached number three. England reached the quarter-finals. Sven-Goran Eriksson's men lost 3-1 on penalties to Portugal. Wayne Rooney was sent off for stamping.