Your Saturday UK Briefing: ITV Will Be Today’s World Cup Winner


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It’s cold outside, but the World Cup is heating up with England playing Mbappé and friends for a spot in the semis.

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ITV should be the winner regardless of the outcome with exclusive rights to tonight’s match. The audience could exceed 25 million, beating 20.4 million for England’s knockout match against Senegal on Sunday, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Matt Bloxham. The BBC, the joint rights holder, has the first pick of the semifinals, so Gary Lineker will have even more skin in this game than normal.

And pubs may be packed for the match, but they’re being hit hard by rail strikes. Almost a third of bookings for the peak party season have been cancelled, rivalling last year’s shutdown due to the fast-spreading omicron Covid variant. Some hotels have turned their sights to New Year’s Eve with extravagant weekend parties planned.

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Germany didn’t make it out of the group stages, but they do top one table: The biggest polluter in the EU. And that’s forcing them to look harder at renewables, Petra Sorge writes.

The freezing weather is starting to bite in Europe, putting strains on energy systems. London could get its first snow of the year and temperatures could drop to minus 10C in remote areas.

Some Tory MPs are trying to make sure they’re not left out in the cold at the next election, seeking out the safest seats, according to Alex Wickham.

One bright spot for the economy is the UK’s booming film industry, Liza Tetley writes. The industry is expanding so quickly it’s struggling to hire enough workers.

Finally, the Treasury unveiled its long-promised overhaul of financial regulation on Friday, but Bloomberg Opinion’s Paul J. Davies says it falls short of the second Big Bang expected by many. Lizzy Burden discusses the proposals with City Minister Andrew Griffith on the UK Politics podcast.


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