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Gary Lineker Presented "Match Of The Day" In His Underwear

In an interview with BuzzFeed News, Lineker remained vague on whether he would actually will present Match of the Day in his pants, but hinted "a statement is a statement".

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UPDATE: Gary Lineker stuck to his word and opened the first episode of Match of the Day in his underwear.

Courtesy of BBC

This scene would disappoint some, who expected him to present in a pair of y-fronts. A bet though, is a bet. Original story below.

  1. Are boxers..

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Imagine visiting the UK for the first time, putting on the hotel TV & thinking 'hmm, that's how they do sport' #MOTD


Can't believe Wrighty and Shearer are keeping straight faces #MOTD

Not sure how we feel about this BBC adaptation of #NakedAttraction...

It was a tweet that Gary Lineker will never forget.

Shaun Botterill / Getty Images

Lineker tweeted this shortly after Leicester City's 2–1 win over Chelsea last season, which sent them top of the table. He had no idea that by the end of the season they would still be there, becoming the most unlikely Premier League champions ever.

"You have to understand when I tweeted that, in December I think it was, I categorically knew that there was zero chance that Leicester would win the league," lifelong Leicester fan and former player Lineker told BuzzFeed News by phone.

"So even though it felt like a bold statement at the time I knew I was safe, but then obviously the miracle happened and here we are."

Match of the Day (MOTD) fans have, of course, not forgotten the tweet, with the promise even being used to promote the first show of the new season.

Are you ready for the return of #MOTD on Saturday night on @BBCOne at 10.30pm?


Lineker has also played on it by teasing Instagram photos including hashtags such as "#MOTD #pants #gym".

Instagram: @garylineker

When asked whether he will do the show in his pants for the entirety of Saturday's MOTD, Lineker laughed. "I think doing it for the whole show would become farcical and a little bit about…more about me than the show itself and the football, that’s the important thing.

"You’ll have to wait and see ... But obviously, a statement is a statement. I will do my best as long as they keep the studio warm."

As for Leicester's chances this time round? Claudio Ranieri, their manager, said yesterday that it's impossible for Leicester to win the Premier League again, joking that it would be easier for "ET to come to Piccadilly Circus".

Alex Broadway / Getty Images

Lineker agrees. "What happened to him was a spectacular one-off – a sporting miracle that I never really anticipated seeing in my lifetime, let alone it happening twice. No, he’s right. Course he is."

He also said that there will be added pressure on Leicester to perform well this season. "We’re aware that that was a one-off and nobody thought that would happen. So there will be all eyes, if they lose two or three games everyone will be going, 'Oh, it was a flash in the pan'. Of course it was a flash in the pan. We know it was a flash in the pan. Nobody expected anything else.

"Leicester are probably not going to win it again and hopefully they’ll have a respectable season and enjoy their 12 months as champions."

And as for the coming season? New rules mean that red cards will be given to players who confront referees and Lineker believes this will make a difference.

Laurence Griffiths / Getty Images

“I think it will change the players' behaviour in the game, which is important and needs to be changed. I think it will only change if the referees are strong and stick to it. Even if it becomes a little bit chaotic and a little bit carnage at times and we start losing players, they will quickly learn that we can’t behave in that way.

"It’s embarrassing how players, and they did it in my generation as well, confront referees like they do."

Lineker's expecting an equally dramatic and unpredictable season: "I can’t think of a time where I’ve been more excited about a Premier League and less confident about predicting who could possibly win. It’s really impossible to call because of the nature of the fact that there are so many new coaches coming."

This summer saw Manchester United break the world transfer record to sign Paul Pogba for almost £90 million.

Paul Ellis / AFP / Getty Images

Lineker said increased TV revenue for clubs should not just be used to sign the best players in the world, but to keep tickets affordable for fans.

“I think the important thing we have to remember about football in this country is that it is very vibrant and it’s very good to watch, not only in the flesh but also on TV, because our stadiums are full," he said. "So the important thing is that we have got to keep our stadiums full, and you have got to keep them to capacity because that generates the atmosphere that makes it better for both people at the ground and those watching on TV. We do not want to alienate supporters.

“In terms of the pricing of football tickets, there’s no need given the massive amount of money that’s coming in now, from television rights, there’s no need for them to be greedy. Look after the supporters, make sure they can still afford to go and watch football."

And as for the pants? Well we don't know yet, but basically it is unlikely he will wear them for the whole show.*

BBC / Laura Gallant / BuzzFeed

Lineker is also going to think a bit more carefully about making bold predictions on Twitter in future: "It will make me ponder in future, don’t worry."

*This is obviously not the real poster.

Watch the opening Match of the Day of the 2016/17 season on BBC One at 10:30pm on Saturday 13 August.

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