BBC Cancels Football Focus After Presenter Alex Scott Pulls Out Over Gary Lineker Row
File photo dated 26-02-2023 of Alex Scott, who enjoyed a successful playing career with Arsenal and England before moving into broadcasting after her retirement in 2017. Gary Lineker will "step back" from presenting Match Of The Day until he and the BBC have reached an "agreed and clear position" on his use of social media, the broadcaster said. Issue date: Friday march 10, 2023.
The BBC has cancelled today’s Football Focus show after presenter Alex Scott pulled out in protest at the treatment of Gary Lineker.
She said it “doesn’t feel right for me to go ahead” after the Match of the Day host was suspended by the corporation over a tweet criticising the government’s migrant crackdown.
I made a decision last night that even though I love my show and we have had an incredible week winning an SJA for football focus that it doesn’t feel right for me to go ahead with the show today.. Hopefully I will be back in the chair next week….
— Alex Scott MBE (@AlexScott) March 11, 2023
Fellow sports presenter Kelly Somers also tweeted that she “won’t be on BBC television today”.
Just to confirm I won’t be on BBC television today. 👍🏼
— Kelly Somers (@KellySomers) March 11, 2023
In a further development, it also emerged that Premier League players will not be interviewed for tonight’s Match of the Day programme, which is going ahead with no presenter or pundits.
A spokesman for the Professional Footballers Association said: “We have been informed that players involved in today’s games will not be asked to participate in interviews with Match of the Day.
“The PFA have been speaking to members who wanted to take a collective position and to be able to show their support for those who have chosen not to be part of tonight’s programme.
“During those conversations we made clear that, as their union, we would support all members who might face consequences for choosing not to complete their broadcast commitments.
“This is a common sense decision that ensures players won’t now be put in that position.”