The 4 Special References Michael Sheen Made in His Wales World Cup Speech

After a 64-year-long wait, Wales will finally feature in the World Cup, as part of the final 32 teams that’ll head to Qatar in November. 

It has been a long and arduous road for The Dragons who finally reached the promised land after picking up a victory against Ukraine.

Led from the front by captain Gareth Bale, who scored the decider against Ukraine, Wales will look to eclipse their previous finish and create history. 

Gareth Bale celebrates scoring a free-kick against Ukraine that gave Wales a vital 1-0 win to confirm their place at the 2022 FIFA World Cup

The side have endured numerous disappointments on the way to qualification in past editions.

But all that will be swept away as the nation will come together to cheer on the Cymru.

With the expectations of a country on their shoulders, The Dragons certainly won’t require any further motivation.

If there is still a need for a pep talk, the team should look no further than Michael Sheen.

The actor recently delivered a passionate rallying cry for the team on a quiz show, and it’ll likely leave your hair standing up.

It all happened on an episode of ‘A League Of Their Own’ featuring the ‘Underworld’ star. 

The Michael Sheen speech as seen on a t-shirt

In attendance alongside Sheen were Jamie Redknapp, Micah Richards, and Aaron Ramsdale among others.

Upon being asked to deliver a rallying cry for the Welsh National Team, Sheen delivered a monologue for the ages, packed with numerous references.

The passionate speech was supposedly impromptu, which makes it all the more impressive. 

The 53-year-old was unwavering and fervent with his style of oration, and it ended up moving everyone in attendance as he received a standing ovation.

While the entire speech is worth recounting in detail, here are a few key references that were simply brilliant.

Yma o Hyd –

With his arms spread out and triumphant music blaring in the background, Sheen started with a refrain of ‘Yma o Hyd’.

This is the title of a patriotic Welsh song that is often used as an anthem.

Wales players singing Yma o Hyd’ with Dafydd Iwan.

The title translates to ‘We are Still Here’. 

It signifies the survival of Wales’ native language and the survival of the nation against all odds.

‘With the spirit of 58’ –

A rallying cry would be incomplete without mentioning those who came before, something Sheen made sure to incorporate in his monologue.

Flipping through the pages of history, the actor invoked a sense of pride and lineage by mentioning the Wales side that travelled to Sweden for the 1958 World Cup. 

He also mentions legendary manager Jimmy Murphy, who led the team to Sweden.

Rob’s Page –

He also made a quick reference to present-day Wales Gaffer Rob Page by saying, ‘It turns the pages of the history books and finds Rob’s page, waiting, still to be written’.

Page was initially only deputizing during the absence of Ryan Giggs. 

As interim manager, Wales successfully qualified for the World Cup.

And soon enough, he became permanent manager following Giggs’ official resignation.

If 2022 ends up being a campaign to remember for the side, Page’s story will likely become folklore.

Sons of Speed –

With poetic aptitude akin to that of Peter Drury, Sheen closed out his monologue with one final reference, this time to Leeds United hero Gary Speed.

The former Everton player briefly managed Wales, and he has often been viewed as the catalyst for the side’s present-day success.

Speed tragically passed away at 42 years of age, after taking his own life at his home in Cheshire.

It would be a shame if Sheen never gets to rouse the players up in person, and at the very least, we hope the monologue is played out in the dressing room before they take to the pitch in Qatar.