Fri. Feb 22nd, 2019

The Papers: ‘Secret Brexit plot’ and Banks tributes

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The Express leads on a “secret Brexit plot” to force MPs to choose between a revised divorce deal or a “long” delay to Brexit. The paper says the comments by the UK’s chief negotiator, Olly Robbins, which were overheard in a hotel bar, have prompted “fury” from Brexiteers as they appear to rule out a no-deal Brexit.
The comments also feature on the Guardian’s front page, which describes the prime minister’s tactic as “my way or a long delay”. The paper’s main story focuses on criticism of the Home Office for working with the Zimbabwean government to accelerate the deportation of asylum seekers to the African country.
The prime minister has been branded a liar and a blackmailer in the Commons after delaying another vote on her Brexit deal, the Metro reports. Theresa May had been expected to put the withdrawal agreement before Parliament on Thursday but told MPs she needed more time to secure concessions from Brussels, the paper says.
The Telegraph reports that the governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, has swapped “fear for hope”, by saying Brexit could be a springboard to a “new global order” of free trade. The paper says the comments are in “stark contrast” to his previous warnings about the risks of a no-deal Brexit.
The Financial Times has a different take on its front page. Instead, the paper focuses on Mr Carney’s description of Brexit as an “acid test” for the future of global trade that “could go quite badly”. It describes the comments as “his strongest warning yet on the risks of leaving the EU without a deal”. However, the paper’s lead story focuses on Saudi Arabia’s plans to develop an international energy exploration and production business for the first time.
Brexit is also the focus of the Times’ lead story, which says that the head of MI6 is expected to stay in post beyond his retirement date to guide the intelligence service through the “period of upheaval” after the UK leaves the EU. If the extension is confirmed Alex Younger, 55, will become the longest-serving MI6 chief since the 1960s, the paper says.
The Mirror is one of several papers to lead on the death of England’s World Cup-winning goalkeeper Gordon Banks. The paper says his “astounding agility helped him make the best save of all time” – keeping out a Pele header in the 1970 World Cup match against Brazil.
“He had the whole world in his hands” is the headline in the Sun. The paper says tributes to Banks have “poured in from across the globe”, including from Pele himself, after the footballer died aged 81.
The i leads on what it describes as a “cash crisis” at UK universities. The paper says 8,000 jobs have been cut in the past year, with warnings that some institutions could go bankrupt.
The Daily Mail’s front page focuses on its campaign to “clean up Britain”. The paper thanks the 55,000 readers who have signed up to take part in litter pick-ups across the country.
The Daily Star reports that singer Katy Perry has been forced to drop a range of her designer shoes, amid criticism that they look similar to “blackface” make-up.

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‘Secret Brexit plot’ and Banks tributes

Revelations about the PM’s Brexit strategy and tributes to England goalkeeper Gordon Banks feature.

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