Michael Owen: My daughter on 'Love Island' is 'not something a father wants to watch'

·Contributor
·3 min read
Michael Owen has revealed how he has felt watching daughter Gemma on Love Island this week. (PA/Getty/ITV)
Michael Owen has revealed how he has felt watching daughter Gemma on Love Island this week. (PA/Getty/ITV)

Michael Owen has delivered his verdict on the first week of his daughter Gemma's time on Love Island, saying the show is "not something any father wants to watch".

The former England striker's 19-year-old daughter entered the villa as part of the original cast this week and has already been at the centre of drama.

Read more: Meet the contestants on Love Island 2022

Gemma originally coupled up with Liam Llewellyn via the public vote, only to be chosen by newcomer Davide Sanclimenti on day two and then by Luca Bish in Friday's recoupling.

"It’s not something any father wants to watch, is it?" Owen told the Daily Mail.

Watch: Gemma and Davide kiss on Love Island

Owen had never seen an episode of Love Island before and confessed he was baffled by the fact all of the contestants routinely share beds within their couples.

He said: "Luckily for me, there was no physical contact. Gemma had her back to the guy. There was space between them.

"I thought 'good girl'. No father wants to see physical contact, do they? I certainly don’t.

"If there is physical contact I think I’ll be throwing something at the screen. I don’t want to see kissing. Do not make me see kissing."

Gemma Owen is the youngest contestant on this year's series of Love Island. (ITV)
Gemma Owen is the youngest contestant on this year's series of Love Island. (ITV)

Owen revealed Gemma had spent a lot of time thinking about the decision to go on Love Island and had sought his advice, as well as mum Louise's blessing.

Having been at the centre of the show's drama, Gemma has received criticism from viewers, with some branding her rude for her attitude towards other islanders.

Read more: Gemma Owen admits she's competitive like her dad

"I know she’s been used to that sort of thing with me — I’ve had it all my life," Owen said of the social media reaction towards her.

He added: "To look at my social media feeds you’d think 70 per cent of the world hates me, but it’s different when it’s your daughter."

Michael Owen said he is no stranger to public criticism, from his playing career and his work as a pundit. (Michael Steele/Allsport)
Michael Owen said he is no stranger to public criticism, from his playing career and his work as a pundit. (Michael Steele/Allsport)

Owen said he is not worried about how Gemma will cope mentally with the challenges of being in the public eye on a show as huge as Love Island.

He added: "I hope this isn’t me being naïve or blasé, but I think I know Gemma better than anyone else on the planet and mentally she is rock solid."

Read more: Laura Whitmore fires back at Love Island fan criticism

Friday's episode of Love Island saw the villa rocked by the results of the recoupling, as well as Llewellyn's departure, with Paige Thorne and Afia Tonkmor now single.

The final moments of the episode, though, teased further drama for Gemma, with the revelation that new bombshell arrival is rugby player Jacques O’Neill — her ex-boyfriend.

Love Island airs at 9pm on ITV2 on weekdays and Sundays.

Watch: Liam breaks the news that he's leaving Love Island