The Five Minute Interview: Gary Lineker

"I wish I was 20-years younger as I’d be earning a few quid as a footballer now..."


Gary Lineker, 48, is a former England international footballer turned television presenter. Gary is England's all time World Cup top scorer, with a total of 10 goals in two tournaments and scored an astonishing 244 goals in 466 appearances for clubs including Tottenham Hotspur and Barcelona. He retired from professional football in 1994 and embarked on a media career, culminating in his fronting of the BBC's flagship football programme Match of the Day. Gary stars in the recent ‘Do Us A Flavour’ Walkers crisps advertising campaign. For more visit:
www.walkers.co.uk.

If I weren't talking to you right now I'd be…

Playing golf. I’ve only got a Saturday job so my weekdays are generally pretty free. It’s easy for me to sneak off to the course for a few rounds.



A phrase I use far too often...

Well I’m sure Match of The Day viewers could think of a few but I do my best not to slip into habits like that. I try to avoid saying “fantastic” too often and “obviously” is a dangerous word for all broadcasters.



I wish people would take more notice of...

Spinal injuries. My fiancée’s brother-in-law was recently paralysed in an accident and it really brought home the fact that thousands of young people live with spinal injuries. It’s an issue I wish had more coverage.



A common misperception of me is...

That I have big ears when I’ve clearly just got a very, very small head.



The most surprising thing that ever happened to me was...

Winning Sports Broadcaster of the Year. I think I was born to be in the box not on it and whereas football came naturally to me, I’ve had to work very hard on my television skills. Winning that award was a real surprise and a great boost.



I am not a politician but...

If I were I’d lower taxes for all sports presenters! But seriously there are so many massive issues going on at the moment that I fear the environment will take second place. We really need to remain focussed on climate change.



I'm good at...

I was quite good at football once, although other than that my speciality would be maths. I’m great at sudokus and find all the spin-off games pretty easy too.



But I'm very bad at...

Anything that requires using my imagination. I’m also awful at music, singing and dancing, so to be honest the list of things I’m bad at is probably endless.



The ideal night out is...

A really good meal and a fantastic bottle of red wine. I love going to Zuma which is a Japanese restaurant in London and also Ziani’s – a wonderful Italian place near Chelsea.



In moments of weakness I...

Eat salt and vinegar crisps. I tend to have those moments of weakness daily.



You know me as a former-footballer and television presenter but in truer life I'd have been...

A golfer, although I doubt I’d ever have been good enough to go professional. If that had failed I’d have tried my hand at sports-writing. I always dreamed of being a sports journalist and in many ways it’s what I’ve become.



The best age to be is...

Well I wish I was 20-years younger as I’d be earning a few quid as a footballer now but I think that, generally speaking, being in your thirties is actually the best. You’re still young but you have a bit more experience and physically you’re still in pretty good shape. I’ve tried to carry that on into my forties but believe me, it’s hard.



In a nutshell, my philosophy is…

Whatever you do, give it everything. I try to give my all in everything I do, whether it’s football, television or flogging crisps. If you give it everything you can’t really have any regrets.

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Project Manager (HR)- Bristol - Upto £400 p/day

£350 - £400 per annum + competitive: Orgtel: Project Manager (specializing in ...

HR Business Partner (Maternity Cover 12 Months)

£30000 - £34000 Per Annum 25 days holiday, Private healthcare: Clearwater Peop...

Project Manager (Procurement & Human Resources)

Unpaid: Cancer Research UK: If you’re a professional in project management, lo...

Geography Teacher

£85 - £140 per day: Randstad Education Cheshire: We require a teacher of Geogr...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices
Could our smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases via Health Kit and Google Fit?

Could smartphones soon be diagnosing diseases?

Health Kit and Google Fit have been described as "the beginning of a health revolution"
Ryanair has turned on the 'charm offensive' but can we learn to love the cut-price carrier again?

Can we learn to love Ryanair again?

Four recent travellers give their verdicts on the carrier's improved customer service
Billionaire founder of Spanx launches range of jeans that offers

Spanx launches range of jeans

The jeans come in two styles, multiple cuts and three washes and will go on sale in the UK in October
10 best over-ear headphones

Aural pleasure: 10 best over-ear headphones

Listen to your favourite tracks with this selection, offering everything from lambskin earmuffs to stainless steel
Commonwealth Games 2014: David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end

Commonwealth Games

David Millar ready to serve up gold for his beloved Scotland in the end
UCI Mountain Bike World Cup 2014: Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings

UCI Mountain Bike World Cup

Downhill all the way to the top for the Atherton siblings
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star