Match of the Day review – without Lineker, this is just 20 minutes of shameful, joyless TV | Television & radio

‘Gary Lineker’s the best in the business,” said the BBC director-general, Tim Davie, on Saturday, during a hostile interview with his own organisation in which he insisted he would not resign. “That’s not for debate.”

An eerily simplified edition of Match of the Day, truncated to just 20 minutes in length, underlined his point.

Only 32 hours previously, viewers had been expecting the best football highlights programme there has ever been to appear as normal. Its host, Lineker, had been criticised by government ministers and their media outriders for tweeting that the…


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