Gary Lineker refuses to apologise as BBC World Cup host gushes over Lionel Messi again | Football | Sport


BBC host Gary Lineker has refused to apologise for his affection towards Argentina captain Lionel Messi ahead of the World Cup final on Sunday. Messi’s side are set to take on France as the Paris Saint-Germain star attempts to win the trophy for the first time in his career, and the ex-England striker has claimed that he will continue to praise the 35-year-old.

Lineker has had a publicly long-standing admiration for Messi, and has always proclaimed that he is above Cristiano Ronaldo in the debate over the pair. The presenter has come in for criticism during the BBC’s coverage of the tournament in Qatar for his comments regarding Messi, as he has been called out by Piers Morgan.

However Lineker has stated that he will continue to gush over the Argentine. “One-off finals, they can twist and turn on a little bit of good fortune,” Lineker told the BBC as he previewed Sunday’s final. “An incredible moment that might come for Messi or [Kylian] Mbappe, or both.

“It is a really tough one to predict. I’d personally [say] because it’s probably widely known that I am a massive admirer of Lionel Messi and I make no apologies for that. He has given me so much joy, watching the incredible amounts of football that I do watch over nearly two decades.

JUST IN: Lionel Messi mind games begin as French media dub him ‘a Frenchman’

“I think whatever happens in this final for him, he has confirmed his status as being right up there with one of the all-time greats. His performances have been just staggering, game after game of doing those moments. Even in his quiet games, he does three or four things that always take your breath away.

“But the things in these matches have been incredible, so I think he is playing with a bit more of that freedom because of the winning of the Copa America, and he is playing with a joy that we have seen for so many years. I would love to see Argentina do it for that reason, France would be worthy winners as well, they are an excellent side but they did win it four years ago.”


Lineker engaged with Morgan on another Twitter spat after Messi fired Argentina into the quarter-finals, as Morgan was not impressed with the punditry on offer by the BBC. “The relentless Messi fan-girling by the whole BBC punditry team is getting excruciatingly obsequious,” Morgan wrote.

“Getting worried one of them might have an ‘accident’ in the studio. Calm yourselves, lads. He had a good game against an average side. See how he does against a good team.”

Lineker fired back with a reference to Morgan’s interview with Ronaldo that led to the 37-year-old’s contract being terminated by Manchester United: “Good to see you emerge briefly from deep inside the bowels of Ronaldo to express your opinion.”

Source link


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here