United Kingdom

Friday morning UK news briefing: Today's top headlines from The Telegraph

Welcome to your early-morning news briefing from The Telegraph - a round-up of the top stories we are covering on Friday. To receive twice-daily briefings by email, sign up to our Front Page newsletter for free.

1. The Queen: People who refuse vaccine should think of others, rather than themselves

The Queen has said people who refuse the coronavirus vaccine "ought to think about other people rather than themselves". 

2. Rishi Sunak will call for 'honesty' about spending as he is warned against tax rises

Rishi Sunak will call for “honesty” about the need to eventually bring down wartime levels of spending in his Budget speech next week, as several Cabinet ministers – and David Cameron – warned him against tax rises.

The Chancellor will say that the vast government spending caused by the pandemic is unsustainable, even as he pledges to help the worst affected through the next few months. Read the full story.

3. ‘Aloof' Civil Service needs private sector overhaul, says key adviser

The civil service needs to recruit more from outside of London to overhaul a perception the political system is “aloof, arrogant, remote”, the Prime Minister’s new deputy chief of staff has said.

Baroness Finn has also called for Whitehall to draft in more expertise from the private sector as part of a drive to boost commercial awareness and risk appetite at the heart of Government. Read the full story.

4. Commuters should get used to fewer trains after pandemic, Network Rail boss suggests

Commuters should get used to fewer trains after the pandemic but can expect better reliability, the chairman of Network Rail has indicated.

Sir Peter Hendy said on Thursday that “too many trains on the track” does not improve the service, adding: “We’ve proved that.” Read the full story.

5. Mr Potato Head goes gender-neutral

With his luxuriant moustache, there was little doubt that Mr Potato Head was the head of the household.

But no more as Hasbro, the world's third-largest toy manufacture, signalled that the traditional nuclear family should not be set in stone. Hasbro has decided that the Mr Potato Head brand will in future just be known as Potato Head. Read the full story.

Stay up-to-date with breaking news and the latest politics from The Telegraph throughout the day.

Football news:

Juventus wants to extend the loan of Morata for at least another season for 10 million euros
Milan wants to buy Tonali from Brescia
Dembele has an inguinal hernia. He has been playing with discomfort for several weeks and is being treated conservatively
Alaba repeated Ribery's record for matches for Bayern for players not from Germany - 425
Mauricio Pochettino: It's impossible not to love Mbappe. It is easier to train him than anyone else
Barcelona estimates the deal for Neymar at 70-80 million euros. The player wants to return (Catalunya Ràdio)
Megan Rapinoe: I'm not asking for a salary like Messi. It's not just black people who should talk about racism in football, and it's not just gay people who should talk about homophobia