Gary Lineker has led the BBC flagship show since taking over from Des Lynam in 1999 and rumours have been swirling about his potential replacement with Jenas favourite for the hotseat
Jermaine Jenas has responded to rumours that he could replace Gary Lineker in the Match of the Day hotseat.
The ex-Spurs, Aston Villa and Newcastle midfielder moved into punditry soon after retiring from the game.
Jenas was a talented midfielder but had a career hampered by injury that did not stop him remaining at the top level for years.
He represented England 21 times and has since worked as a pundit for the BBC and BT Sports as well as co-hosting The One Show.
Jenas has become a hit on people’s screens, and been increasingly tipped to replace Lineker once he hangs up his boots presenting Match of the Day.
The ex-England striker has presented Match of the Day since taking over from Des Lynam in 1999 and became synonymous with the show.
But there have been rumours swirling that Jenas might eventually replace Lineker.
Jenas was flattered by the rumour and said he would love to step into Lineker’s shoes one day.
He also explained how Lineker had once helped him when he first started out on TV.
Jenas told The Sun: “Gary is somebody I’ve always looked up to as a presenter, and someone I’ve loved working with.
“I remember one of my first One Show gigs, I had a bit of a sticky moment and I knew I could have handled it better, and Gary reached out, messaged me and said, ‘Look, just a bit of advice; if this happens again, try doing this’.
“He’d tell me what he used to do when he was first starting out, and I always appreciated that. He went out of his way to help me. Gary is like the Des Lynam of my era, let’s make him feel nice and old!
“Match Of The Day is the biggest job on television, and if I ever got the opportunity of course I’d say yes. When Gary decides to call it a day, I’m sure the BBC will have a look around and decide who’s the best fit for the job.
“Obviously I’d be absolutely delighted if it was me. But Gary’s not going anywhere.”
The 60-year-old signed a deal last year to remain with the BBC until 2025.
After six years, he left BT Sports and moved on to work with LaLigaTV, saying he wanted to follow Leicester into Europe.
The Daily Mail reported that the BBC are eyeing up Jenas to take over from Lineker within two years, but there’s no rush to push the veteran presenter out.
In an interview, Lineker was confident Jenas would have what it would take to take over as presenter.
“Des always used to say, ‘If you think of things that might be funny, go for it. Some people will like it, some won’t.’
“He told me, ‘So many presenters are bland’ and he taught me to be myself, have a bit of fun with it, be brave.”