Gary Lineker broke down in tears when he found out that the experts had supported him in solidarity.
Gary Lineker reportedly broke down in tears after learning his fellow Match Of The Day stars had backed him and pulled out of tonight’s show after BBC bosses took the presenter off the air.
Regular pundits Ian Wright and Alan Shearer have announced they will not appear on tonight’s show to sum up the day’s Premier League action as an act of “solidarity” with their colleague.
Other presenters, commentators and pundits followed suit.
Lineker was taken off the air by BBC bosses on Friday after tweeting earlier in the week that the government’s new ‘Stop The Boats’ immigration policy was ‘not dissimilar to the one used by Germany in the 1930s’.
Addressing the saga, former BBC director-general Greg Dyke said he now believes there is no going back for Lineker to return as a BBC presenter.
Gary Lineker reportedly broke down in tears after learning that his fellow Match Of The Day stars had backed him in an act of “solidarity”.
Former BBC director general Greg Dyke has said he now believes Lineker has no way back from returning as a BBC presenter.
Dyke, who was head of the BBC between 2000 and 2004, was asked on BBC Radio 4’s Today how the current director-general, Tim Davie, should approach the situation.
The 75-year-old, who was also president of the Football Association until 2016, said: “I don’t know how he (Tim Davie) gets out of this.”
“It is quite clear that Gary Lineker will not give him the guarantees he says he wants, therefore I suspect this is the end of Gary Lineker as a BBC presenter as we know it, and I suspect it will be a long run.” Term effect on the game of the day.’
Tonight’s match of the day will now “focus on match action” after the strike by the presenter, commentator and pundit, a BBC spokesman said.
According to The Sun, this brought Linker to tears after hearing about the show of solidarity.
A source told the newspaper: ‘It’s been a tumultuous 24 hours. Gary is in shock and he had no idea this was coming. He wanted to go on the air, he didn’t beat around the bush, it wasn’t his decision.
In private, everyone at the Beeb is also collapsed. They don’t really know how they’re going to put out a show because no one wants to touch it.
“Everyone in the industry is appalled by the way Gary has been hanged and the general inconsistency of the BBC.
‘Gary cried when he found out that all his peers had publicly endorsed him.
Match of the Day’s decision to take Gary Lineker (left) off the air over his comments on the government has led to a strike by hosts Alan Shearer (centre) and Ian Wright (right)
“The support has been overwhelming, which is essentially a huge pie in the face for the BBC.
‘Gary wasn’t about to pretend to support something he vehemently disagreed with.
“He doesn’t need the cash and, frankly, it seems hard to imagine a way back for either party from here.”
The BBC statement previously said: “Some of our insiders have said they do not wish to appear on the show while we look to resolve the situation with Gary.”
“We understand your position and have decided that the show will focus on match action without studio introductions or experts.”
Ian Wright was the first to say he would not appear at the Match of the Day in protest, followed by Newcastle legend Alan Shearer.
Wright said last night: ‘Everyone knows what Match of the Day means to me, but I told the BBC I won’t do it tomorrow. Solidarity.’
Shearer also announced: “I have informed the BBC that I will not be appearing on MOTD tomorrow night.”
Football Focus presenter and former Lioness Alex Scott also seemed to rule it out, tweeting a short meme showing US politician Bernie Sanders saying ‘No! I don’t.’
Jermaine Jenas, seen as an eventual successor to Lineker, said he wouldn’t be on tonight but would have boycotted the show.
Former Manchester City defender Micah Richards also backed Wright and Shearer’s decision to boycott the BBC programme.
“I had no plans to work on MOTD tomorrow but if I did I would find myself making the same decision as @IanWright0 and @alanshearer,” he tweeted.
Gary Lineker, 62, (pictured outside his home yesterday) will not present Match Of The Day tonight after BBC bosses took it off the air.
There will be no regular Match Of The Day presenters, pundits or commentators for the first time in its 59-year history following a massive strike.
Greg Dyke went on to say: “I think what the BBC did yesterday was wrong.
Match of the Day regular commentator Steve Wilson said he and other talking heads have vowed not to participate in the upcoming show.
He said: ‘As commentators on MOTD, we have decided to pull out of the (Saturday) broadcast for the night.
“We take solace that football fans who want to watch their teams can still do so, as management can use the World Feed comments if they want.”
He added: “Given the circumstances, we don’t think it’s appropriate to participate in the show.”
The statement was shared by MOTD commentators including Steve Wilson, Conor McNamara, Robyn Rowen and Steven Wyeth.
After saying he saw no turning back for Linker to return as a BBC presenter, the former CEO also told Today that the BBC was ‘wrong’ to exclude Gary Lineker from his hosting duties on Match Of The Day.
Asked earlier if Lineker’s tweet was acceptable, he said: “We live in a world of free speech and therefore yes.” He didn’t broadcast it on the BBC, it was a tweet he made privately.
Mr Dyke went on to say: ‘I think what the BBC did yesterday was a mistake. And over the years, since I left the BBC, I have never publicly criticized the leadership of the BBC and the decisions they make, because I know how hard the job is and what difficult decisions have to be made.
But, he said, the precedent at the corporation is that “news and current affairs employees are expected to be impartial and not the rest.”
“If you start applying news and current affairs rules to everyone who works for the BBC, where does it end?”
Colleagues from the Support Form Match of The Day reportedly brought Linker to tears after hearing about the show of solidarity.
Dyke also said the BBC had “undermined its own credibility” as it will be seen as having caved in to government pressure.
“There is a long-standing precedent at the BBC which is if you are an entertainment presenter or a football presenter then you are not subject to those same rules (of impartiality).
“The real problem today is that the BBC has undermined its own credibility by doing this because it seems, the perception is out there, that the BBC has caved in to government pressure.
“And once the BBC does that, you’re in real trouble.
“The perception will be that Gary Lineker, a much-loved television presenter, was taken off the air after government pressure on a particular issue.”