I look forward to BBC suspending David Attenborough and Alan Sugar after taking Gary Lineker off air, Piers says
PIERS Morgan has blasted the BBC’s “ridiculous” decision to pull Gary Lineker off Match of The Day.
The corporation said Mr Lineker’s criticism of the government’s Illegal Migration Bill on Twitter was a “breach of our guidelines”.
PAPiers Morgan has blasted the BBC’s ‘ridiculous’ decision to pull Gary Lineker off Match of The Day[/caption]
SplashGary will step back from presenting duties on Match of The Day until a ‘clear position’ on his social media use is agreed[/caption]
The pundit will now step back from presenting duties on the flagship football show – that he’s presented since 1999 – until a “clear position” on his social media use is agreed.
Mr Lineker sparked a free speech row when he compared the governments plans to ban migrants arriving on small boats from settling in Britain with “1930’s Germany”.
But taking to Twitter, Piers blasted the BBC’s decision to suspend his pal.
He fumed: “This is a ridiculous decision and if the BBC really believes its presenters shouldn’t have political opinions then I look forward to them suspending David Attenborough…
“And Alan Sugar and everyone else who has presented BBC shows but makes public their opinions.”
The row ignited after Mr Lineker responded to a video on Twitter of Home Secretary Suella Braverman as she presented the government’s plan for small boats.
He shared the video, commenting: “Good heavens, this is beyond awful.”
Responding to another user who described him as “out of order”, he added: “We take far fewer refugees than other major European countries.
“This is just an immeasurably cruel policy directed at the most vulnerable people in language that is not dissimilar to that used by Germany in the 30s, and I’m out of order?”
In a statement earlier, the BBC outlined they had undergone “extensive discussions” with the ex-England star, 62, following the furore.
While the beeb praised his sports coverage as “second to none” they said he should “keep well away from taking sides” on party political topics.
The full statement read: “The BBC has been in extensive discussions with Gary and his team in recent days.
“We have said that we consider his recent social media activity to be a breach of our guidelines.
“The BBC has decided that he will step back from presenting Match of the Day until we’ve got an agreed and clear position on his use of social media.
“When it comes to leading our football and sports coverage, Gary is second to none.
“We have never said that Gary should be an opinion free zone, or that he can’t have a view on issues that matter to him, but we have said that he should keep well away from taking sides on party political issues or political controversies.”