Foals say they turned down offer to play The Libertines’ surprise Glastonbury Festival slot

Band claim they were too unfit to appear before Florence + The Machine

Foals say they turned down the opportunity to appear immediately before Florence + The Machine at this year’s Glastonbury Festival.

When Florence Welch and co replaced Foo Fighters as headliners following Dave Grohl’s broken leg, it meant that their previous slot second on the bill on the Pyramid Stage on June 26 became vacant.

The slot was eventually filled by The Libertines, whose show wasn’t announced until they appeared as surprise guests on the night. They previewed three new songs from comeback album ‘Anthems For Doomed Youth’ in a 19-song set.

But Foals singer Yannis Philippakis has revealed that they turned down the slot before it was offered to The Libertines.

Philippakis told Q that Foals hadn’t had chance to rehearse how to play songs from their new album ‘What Went Down’ live and didn’t want to be restricted to only playing old material.

NMEAndy Hughes/NME

Philippakis added that the band were too unfit to play such a prestigious show. He said: “I’d been smoking too much. Our shows are so physical that I’d have been wheezing.”

Foals begin touring ’What Went Down’ on August 8 at Romania’s Summer Well festival. They have yet to announce any British shows for the album.

Reports claim that Prince also rejected the chance to play at Glastonbury Festival and that The Who, who had headlined as recently as 2007, filled the slot as Pyramid Stage headliner on June 28.

The Who’s touring keyboardist said in a blog on July 9: “Not many know that we were a last-month’s addition to the show, replacing Prince, who decided not to come this year.”