Southgate’s World Cup barber offers customers free England trims ahead of final

Simon Townley cut Gareth Southgate’s hair in Russia ahead of the 2018 World Cup semi-final.
Simon Townley cut Gareth Southgate’s hair in Russia ahead of the 2018 World Cup semi-final.

The man who cut Gareth Southgate’s hair ahead of the 2018 World Cup semi-final in Russia has been offering free England haircuts to customers ahead of the Euro 2020 final.

Simon Townley, 35, runs the Simon Townley Salon in Burnley, Lancashire, and after “a few drinks” following England’s 2-1 win against Denmark, he posted his offer to Facebook.

The barber awoke to dozens of messages from customers, and with England’s final against Italy approaching, he has created a mini army of – mostly – Phil Fodens.

“I think it’s a very cool idea,” Mr Townley told the PA news agency of Foden’s bleach-blond Paul Gascoigne trim.

“The kids in my town in Burnley, they’re loving it. So I’ve got kids queuing wanting to get in and have it done – I’m happy to be part of it.

“I’ve done it to a couple of footballers in the past – we’ve done it at the end of the season – and the start of the next season they go into training and I’ve had to dye it back dark, because it takes some cojones.

“(Foden’s) first major tournament, to walk in with that haircut, what a guy. Very cool.”

England’s Phil Foden during the UEFA Euro 2020 Group D match at Wembley Stadium, London
(Nick Potts/PA)

Mr Townley has a history of not only imitating famous players’ haircuts, but of creating them too, having done so at Euro 2016 and Russia 2018.

“The first time I ever went anywhere with the England squad was in the Euros in 2016 in France,” he said.

“I was doing (goalkeeper) Tom Heaton’s hair at the time – basically he dropped me a message saying do you fancy coming to France? A few of the lads want a haircut.

“I was like ‘yeah, yeah I’m already going.’ I wasn’t! I basically went online straight away, booked everything, pretended it was no hardship whatsoever.

“Two years later I’m flying to Russia three times and cutting hair.”

In Russia Mr Townley cut a number of players’ hair, as well as that of Three Lions boss Southgate ahead of England’s 2-1 defeat to Croatia in the last four.

Simon Townley cut Gareth Southgate's hair at the 2018 World Cup in Russia

“I was lucky enough to do (Southgate’s hair) for the semi-finals last time in Russia,” he said.

“(I) loved doing that, one of my standout moments, it’s probably the biggest thing I’ve done personally.

“I think he looks cool and I think the waistcoat needs to come back for the final.”

Shaun Garvey checks out his free “Phil Foden” hair cut that would normally cost �100, at Simon Townley hair salon in Burnley, Lancashire, who are offering free hair cuts in the styles of England players, ahead of the UEFA Euro 2020 Final on Sunday
(Danny Lawson/PA)

One man who took Mr Townley up on the offer of an England trim was Shaun Garvey, who went for a “Foden”.

“Yeah, I’m here today and got it done,” he told PA. “I love it. I do I love it. I’ve never done anything like this with my hair.

“I’ve sent (my girlfriend) a picture. She didn’t believe it at first. I think she thought I used an app to change my hair colour.

“She actually said it suits, so all good, all good.”