Gary Lineker's huge net worth, strange love life and infamous public poo

-Credit: (Image: HKGC/GC Images)
-Credit: (Image: HKGC/GC Images)

The European Championships have been going on for a week now and the standard of entertainment on the pitch has been matched by the punditry teams off it.

Both the ITV and BBC have rolled out the big guns for the tournament, with the former employing the likes of Gary Neville, Roy Keane and Ian Wright to impart their expert knowledge on proceedings.

The BBC have gone down the tried and tested route of bringing on board Alan Shearer, Rio Ferdinand and Micah Richards to offer up their views and analysis.

Hosting the shows for the two broadcasters have been Mark Pougatch and Laura Woods for ITV, while for the BBC Gabby Logan and Gary Lineker have fronted the live action from Germany.

Let's get to know the latter a bit better.

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Net worth

Dad-of-four Lineker, 63, had an extremely successful career on the pitch before he swapped the changing room for the television studio. During his playing days he represented Leicester City, Everton, Barcelona, Tottenham and Grampus Eight in Japan, and amassed 80 caps for England.

Unfortunately his time in the game did not coincide with the riches of the Premier League and it his career on the small screen which has seen Lineker rake in the money.

According to the Mirror, his time as a footballer, his media career with the BBC and TNT Sport and advertising campaigns with the likes of Walkers crisps has seen him rack up a net fortune of £30million.

In the BBC's annual report in 2023, Lineker topped the list of the broadcaster's best-paid stars for the sixth year running, earning a staggering £1.35million for the financial year. BBC Radio 2's Zoe Ball was the second-highest earner, with £980,000.

Lineker has fronted Match of the Day since 1999.

Strange love life

Lineker has been married twice. He tied the knot with Michelle Cockayne in 1986 and they had four sons together - George, Harry, Tobias and Angus.

They were together for 20 years before separating. Three years later, he married Welsh model Danielle Bux, who was 20 years his junior. Their marriage ended in 2016, but the two have remained firm friends, with Danielle now married to American lawyer husband Nate Greenwald.

Lineker told Radio Times: "He's not got a jealous bone in his body. We get on really well. We go out for dinner when I'm in LA. It might be unusual and people might go, 'That's weird' but, frankly, I don't care. What is normal? Is it better to get divorced and end up fighting, screaming and shouting? Or is it better to get on if you can?"

As for new partners, the Leicester native opened up on his love life to the Times last year, confirming he was not seeing anyone at the time. "I'm single. I am single," he told The Times: "I like being on my own. I know it sounds a bit mad. I have lots of company. I've got lots of friends and I've also got my boys… I don't feel lonely. I have the date here and there but nothing, not in terms of a long relationship."

"I've been married most of my adult life. Two really good marriages, I'm friends with both," he explained. "I'm not saying whether it'll change. It might do. I don't know. But at the minute I'm very comfortable."

Lineker was recently spotted having dinner with Jemima Goldsmith, the ex-wife of former cricketer and Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan, sparking dating rumours, but these have been dismissed.

'Poo' incident

One of Lineker's most infamous moments during his England career was when he was caught short on the pitch.

During the 1990 World Cup in Italy, the striker encountered a bit of a dodgy belly in their encounter with the Republic of Ireland.

"I hadn't been feeling well the night before.... But I didn't tell anyone because I wanted to play," he said. "About 15 minutes into the second half I start to cramp and I think 'Oh, God, I've got a pain here.

"The ball comes out on his left side and I slid for it, and as I was doing that I relaxed a little bit...and boof. 'Oh, my God,' I said to myself. And I'm sitting on the ground and it's all there.

"You can see me look up and Gary Stevens comes over and I remember him saying to me, 'Links, what's wrong?' and I said, 'I've shat myself'. I felt like crying. Thank God we had the dark blue shorts and not the white shorts."