Former international footballer who holds England’s record for goals in FIFA World Cup finals, with 10 scored. Now a hugely popular sports braodcaster.
Gary Lineker‘s media career began with the BBC, where he has presented the flagship programme Match of the Day since the late 1990s.
He began his football career at Leicester City. Despite failing to score in his first ten games, he finished as the First Division’s joint top goalscorer in 1984–85. He then moved to League Champions Everton where he developed as a clinical finisher, scoring 30 goals in 41 games.
His first team honours came at Barcelona, where he won the Copa del Rey in 1988 and the European Cup Winners’ Cup in 1989. He returned to England in 1989, joining Tottenham Hotspur, and over three seasons he scored 67 goals in 105 games and won the FA Cup.
Gary made his England debut in 1984, earning 80 caps and scoring 48 goals over an eight-year international career, finishing as England’s all-time second highest scorer behind Bobby Charlton. His international goals-to-games ratio remains one of the best for the country and he is regarded as one of the all-time best English strikers. He was top scorer in the 1986 World Cup and received the Golden Boot, the only time an Englishman has achieved this feat.
Even though he enjoyed a long career, Gary Lineker was never cautioned by a referee for foul play and never received a yellow or red card. As a result of this accomplishment he was honoured in 1990 with the FIFA Fair Play Award.
Following retirement from professional football, he developed a career in the media, initially on BBC Radio 5 Live and as a football pundit before replacing Des Lynam as the BBC’s anchorman for football coverage, including their flagship football television programme Match of the Day, and as a team captain on the sports game show They Think It’s All Over from 1995 to 2003.
In 2006, Lineker took on voice artist duty as the voice of Underground Ernie on the BBC’s children’s channel, CBeebies.
His popularity has enabled him to appear in a series of incredibly successful TV commercials for Walkers. Walkers, a Leicester-based British producer of snack foods, temporarily named their salt and vinegar crisps after Gary Lineker in the late 1990s—they were labelled ‘Salt-n-Lineker’.