The Project's Lisa Wilkinson apologises for 'disgusting' on-air joke

The Project's Lisa Wilkinson has been forced to apologise for an on-air gaffe making light of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking on the program on Thursday night, Lisa suggested the conflict between Ukraine and Russia could be settled with a soccer match.

“They should just have one game, Russia versus Ukraine, and we can settle a war," she said.

While her co-hosts laughed off the suggestions, Lisa copped fierce backlash online over the comments.

Lisa Wilkinson on The Project.
Lisa Wilkinson copped backlash for her comments. Source: Channel 10

"Disgusting. You should be ashamed for joking that genocide, rape, murder and stolen children can be settled by a game of football," one wrote on Twitter.

"How insensitive to make a comment like that after all the atrocities," another said.

"Your comments about the Russian war in Ukraine are disgusting! Sometimes it is wise to think before opening your mouth," a third tweeted.


The Daily Telegraph reports the host apologised after she was called out on Instagram by a follower who said it was offensive and lacked sensitivity.

"My sincere apologies. It was not meant to offend ... and I hope the many, many other comments I have made over the last four months have made it clear that my feelings on the tragedy of the despicable acts perpetrated by Russia in this war would make that clear. Again, if not, my sincere apologies for any offence taken," she said.

Lisa Wilkinson and Waleed Aly on The Project.
Lisa Wilkinson was criticised for making light of the conflict in Ukraine. Source: Channel 10

Her comments came before iconic commentator Martin Tyler was forced to apologise after an on-air comment about Ukraine's goalkeeper sparked backlash.

Tyler was calling Ukraine's heartbreaking World Cup qualifying play-off final defeat to Wales when he caused a storm on social media after saying Ukraine goalkeeper Heorhiy Bushchan would have to "soldier on" after hurting his ankle trying to punch a cross clear.

The veteran broadcaster quickly realised his mistake and issued an apology to any viewers that may have been offended.

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