Micheal Owen’s daughter is already making headlines, only days after the start of the current series of Love Island began. Gemma Owen, 19, is one of this year’s hopeful singletons who have joined the villa – and it looks to be making hard viewing for Michael already.
The former player was forced to address jibes about Gemma’s participation on the show before England’s showdown against Germany on Tuesday evening. Michael was working as a pundit for Channel 4’s coverage — and mere seconds into the show, co-presenter Jules Breach joked about his Love Island connection.
Who Is Gemma Owen?
“Joining me expecting to see another famous triumph for England tonight in Munich, England and Arsenal midfield Jordan Nobbs, former England, West Ham, and Chelsea midfielder Joe Cole and the father of Love Island’s Gemma Owen,” said Jules as the coverage started.
With the new series of Love Island only starting on Monday, Jules then asked: “A huge night for the Owens last night, Michael. How are you feeling?” In reaction, the 42-year-old said: “I came all the way to Germany to try and avoid all that back home, but it has been brought up straight away! “But I am feeling alright. This is keeping my mind off it so don’t bring it back up.”
The Love Island.
When asked earlier this month about Gemma entering the Love Island villa, Michael told ITV News:
“I have no worries that she will do us all proud. It’s certainly a father’s worst fear, but whatever she wants to do. You’ve got to be supportive.”
The footballer added: “It’s been weird without her in the house. I’ve had other kids and my wife, and it’s been very stressful because she’s had to put her phone off and we’ve had no contact for a number of weeks so that’s been the hard aspect.
“I’ve heard a lot about it. I guess elderly, cranky men like me will always have an opinion on it because I don’t watch it and you only hear the bits, but she assures me that it’s not as horrible as I think. So, we’ll give it a watch and I hope she enjoys herself.”
Most Renowned Candidate.
Love Island’s most renowned candidate for the 2022 series belongs to one of the most recognized families in British sport. So some fans were left bewildered when her male suitors on the show failed to see the connection between Gemma Owen and her father Michael –
once the best footballer on Earth. The Owens has become a household name in British sport and while Gemma hasn’t taken after her dad by lacing up her boots, she has become a dressage rider. She’s made no secret of her origins and was dropping all sorts of hints in her Love Island promotional video when the program aired on Monday night.
The Extraordinary Career.
But after stating what her last name was, there were no lightbulbs popping up on anyone’s brains regarding who her renowned father was. Even a talk with one of the new guys – who had indicated he intended to go into sports performance and work with football clubs – did not help him work out her relation to Owen Snr, now 42.
Gemma had asked her new match, Liam, if he had played at a ‘good level’, to which he replied: ‘I feel like you’ve been with an ex-footballer or something.’ Indeed many of the public watching the show also looked uninformed of Gemma’s father’s qualifications and importance to English football despite his innumerable triumphs and iconic memories in the beautiful game.
Here, Sportsmail breaks down the extraordinary career of Michael Owen and why Love Island fans should be taking note of him after his daughter headed off for a summer of love in Majorca.