The channel had to cancel a large part of its sports schedule after journalists and players refused to appear on programs in solidarity with the former soccer player.
Former English footballer and commentator Gary Lineker will return to the screens after the string BBC decided this Monday to revoke the suspension that weighed on the scorer of the 1986 World Cup in Mexico for a publication in Twitter who had criticized the British government’s new asylum policy.
“Gary is a valued part of the BBC and I know how much the BBC means to Gary, and I’m looking forward to him presenting our coverage this coming weekend”said BBC director-general Tim Davie.
British national television was forced to cancel a good part of its sports programming for the weekend after what Premier League commentators, analysts and players will refuse to appear in the programs as a show of support for Lineker.
Lineker, one of England’s most successful footballers and the highest paid British corporation television presenter, had been suspended on Friday after comparing the Conservative government’s rhetoric on migrants to that used in Nazi Germany.
“Not a huge influx. We accept far fewer refugees than other major European countries. This is just an immeasurably cruel policy targeting the most vulnerable people in language no different than that used by Germany in the 1930s, and I’m out of it?” place?” The ex-soccer player had posted.
The BBC said the tweet breached its standards of impartiality, though critics accused the network of stifle free speech.
Davie said an independent review of the BBC’s social media standards would be done to address “grey areas” in its protocol.
Lineker, known for his fanaticism for Diego Maradona, Lionel Messi and Argentine soccer, made his defense after learning that the suspension had been lifted by the BBC.
“After a surreal few days, I am delighted that we have navigated this path. I want to thank you all for the incredible support, particularly my colleagues at BBC Sport, for the remarkable show of solidarity. Football is a team game, but their support was overwhelming,” he started in a Twitter thread.
He continued: “I’ve been presenting sports on the BBC for almost 3 decades and am immensely proud to work with the best and fairest broadcaster in the world. I can’t wait to get back in the MOTD chair on Saturday.”
In this sense, Lineker took the opportunity to reaffirm his position on the statements that led to the punishment of the BBC.
“A final thought: as difficult as the last few days have been, they simply do not compare to having to flee persecution or war at home to seek refuge in a faraway land. It is heartwarming to have seen the empathy towards their plight by part of so many of you,” he said.
And he closed with an emoticon of a heart: “We continue to be a predominantly tolerant, welcoming and generous country. Thank you.”