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Sep 16, 2005
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31 March 2006
EXCLUSIVE Row over England's World Cup games snub
By Oliver Holt Chief Sports Writer

THE BBC's World Cup plans were thrown into chaos last night when star analyst Graeme Le Saux quit in a bitter bust-up over broken promises.

Le Saux walked out in disgust after TV bosses went back on assurances they had made about his World Cup duties this summer.

He was scheduled to appear alongside Gary Lineker on Match of the Day tomorrow night but the BBC are now scrambling to find a replacement.

The row blew up after Le Saux was told rival pundit Mark Lawrenson was being given the prized job of co-commentator on England's games this summer.

Former England regular Le Saux had been told several weeks ago that he had won the race to be John Motson's sidekick.

It is even thought Le Saux had been sent schedules of the matches in Germany showing clearly that he would be covering the BBC's England games.

So he was astonished yesterday when BBC Head of Football Niall Sloane told him that plans had suddenly changed.

Le Saux was offered work on other World Cup matches in Germany and Sloane asked him to stay on.

But it is believed that Le Saux felt undermined by the decision and upset by the way the news was broken to him. Sources close to the BBC said they were hoping that the row could be patched up but that seems unlikely.

Le Saux may feel that the BBC have betrayed his trust after he effectively quit his playing career a year early to nail down a prime position.

He was promised that he had a glittering future within the corporation before he left Southampton last summer.

And he has been a popular, respected and hard-working addition to the highly-rated team of football presenters.

He has worked a series of gruelling 12-hour shifts most weekends in a determined bid to learn a new trade. But he has struggled to break into the golden circle of presenters formed by Lineker, Lawrenson and Alan Hansen.

The row is a huge embarrassment to the BBC. And they could now lose Le Saux to either Sky or ITV.

Woooo yeh

**** knows what it means by risk losing to sky or ITV, I dont know one person IRL or online whos ever said they liked or even could stand him.

Aaaaaaaaah what a shame, he worked gruelling 12 hour shifts on weekends to learn how to talk about football. ****.
I work gruelling 12 hour shifts every ******* day for a **** sight less than he gets. And so ******* what he wouldnt be commentating on England. Hes a **** commentator, and hed have still been paid (handsomely) to watch live World Cup football.
Won't be a loss to us put it that way.
It's bad for me, I don't like Le Saux much but my commentry Kryptonite has got the job instead, argh! :mad: