Gary Lineker has reportedly been offered a new job, just one day after he was suspended by the BBC.
Lineker was told to step back from presenting Saturday night’s episode of Match of the Day (MOTD) during talks on Friday.
The BBC want to reach an agreement with Lineker over his social media use after a tweet that he posted criticising the government’s new asylum policy led to an impartiality row.
Instead of preparing for MOTD on Saturday afternoon, Lineker was seen visiting the King Power Stadium, where he watched his beloved Leicester City lose 3-1 at home to Chelsea.
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Lineker has been publicly backed by many of his BBC colleagues, including Ian Wright and Alan Shearer, who both told their employers that they would not be featuring on Saturday’s MOTD either.
Wright has even said that he will quit MOTD for good unless Lineker is reinstated.
Read more: Ian Wright will quit Match of the Day for good unless Gary Lineker reinstated
The saga has turned into a full-blown crisis for the BBC, who will reportedly show a reduced 20-minute version of MOTD on Saturday evening.
With the show’s commentators also showing solidarity with Lineker, Saturday’s MOTD will reportedly be broadcast without any commentary.
Gary Lineker ‘offered new job’
It’s unclear at this stage where the BBC and Lineker go from here.
Other broadcasters are reportedly keeping a close eye on the developing situation, including BT Sport.
According to the Daily Mail – per The Sun – Lineker is wanted by BT Sport to become the face of their rebranded football coverage next season.
BT Sport will relaunch as TNT Sports ahead of the 2023-24 season after being taken over by Warner Bros. Discovery.
And they are apparently looking towards the vastly-experienced Lineker, MOTD’s lead host since 1999, to present next season’s Premier League coverage.
Lineker previously worked for BT Sport
Lineker previously worked for BT Sport, hosting their Champions League coverage for six years until 2021.
He announced his decision to walk away from the broadcaster in May 2021, explaining that he wanted to follow Leicester in Europe with his sons.
But the opportunity to be the main face of TNT Sports, who will have two seasons of live Premier League rights and four more years of Champions League games when they launch this summer, may appeal to Lineker if he’s unable to reach an agreement with the BBC.