Ian Wright has returned home from his World Cup punditry duties with ITV after his wife and children were held at knifepoint in the Arsenal legend's north London home.
As reported by Keith Jackson and Ben Perrin of the Sun (subscription required)—a publication Wright works for as a columnist—the incident is said to have taken place at 9.30 p.m. on Wednesday after a gang followed the family home from their visit to the park.
Steve Kutner, Wright's manager, praised ITV for their help: "It was a terrifying ordeal. They marched Ian's wife from room to room. I would like to thank ITV for helping Ian to get home as quickly as possible," per the aforementioned report.
Wright jumped onto an 11-hour flight home to support his loved ones. While police are currently "probing an aggravated burglary," Wright indicated he is looking for justice to be dealt:
You won't get away with it!— Ian Wright (@IanWright0) June 18, 2014
Amy Lawrence, writer for The Guardian, highlighted the horror of seeing the family put through such an ordeal:
Thinking about @IanWright0's lovely little kids, put through an unthinkable ordeal. Hope they come through and despicable gang caught asap— Amy Lawrence (@amylawrence71) June 19, 2014
Wright was scheduled to offer his insight on ITV's Wednesday broadcast of the Cameroon vs. Croatia match, as highlighted by the ITV Player catch-up service. However, the 50-year-old didn't appear on the channel's live show and was instead heading back to England, where he remains a prominent figure in the footballing world.
It is possible Wright's appearances on ITV's World Cup coverage could have seen him targeted due to it being clear he wasn't scheduled to be at home for the tournament's duration. Wealthy sportsmen are often earmarked to suffer crimes in England, with current Three Lions captain Steven Gerrard among those who has faced similar incidents.
Scotland Yard confirmed a brief description of those who forced their way into Wright's home, reported via Miranda Prynne of the Telegraph:
"Personal possessions were stolen. The suspects are described as four black men aged between 18 and 25, with London accents, wearing dark clothing and hoodies obscuring their faces," reads the statement.
It is unknown whether Wright will return to his duties in Brazil.