Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 21 September 2014

Gary Linekar should say what he thinks more often

England's captain Ashley Cole is applauded by his manager Roy Hodgson after receiving his 100th cap during the International Friendly match at Wembley Stadium, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday May 29, 2013. See PA story SOCCER England. Photo credit should read: John Walton/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to FA restrictions. Editorial use only. Commercial use only with prior written consent of the FA. No editing except cropping. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 or see www.paphotos.com/info/ for full restrictions and further information.
England's captain Ashley Cole is applauded by his manager Roy Hodgson after receiving his 100th cap during the International Friendly match at Wembley Stadium, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday May 29, 2013. See PA story SOCCER England. Photo credit should read: John Walton/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Use subject to FA restrictions. Editorial use only. Commercial use only with prior written consent of the FA. No editing except cropping. Call +44 (0)1158 447447 or see www.paphotos.com/info/ for full restrictions and further information.

When Gary Lineker tweeted his thoughts that Roy Hodgson's tactics against the Republic of Ireland on Wednesday night were "a step back to the dark ages" it prompted near unanimous agreement. But there was another comment buried under the stacks of replies which deserves airing.

 

Lineker had earlier tweeted that post-season friendlies were "pointless". Among the replies was one comment: "Bet you wouldn't say that if [the match] was on the BBC". Lineker, to his credit, replied by admitting: "That's very true, but I'd have thought it."

His revelation prompted the question: how many times on the Match of the Day sofa has he thought that, say, Arsenal have been flaky or Alan Hansen is talking a load of hot air – yet not aired his views?

As the show's host, it is not his job to be polemical, it is his pundits'. But as Hansen's, Alan Shearer's and, to a lesser extent, Mark Lawrenson's default setting is to state the obvious, wouldn't it be refreshing if Lineker dropped a discussion-sparking grenade every now and then as he did on Wednesday? He got his public talking – it would be good to get them doing so on a weekly basis.

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Nightlife galleries

More

Latest Sport News

Stats Centre