A quick chat with Gary Lineker

We know you’re getting married but hear you’re sworn to secrecy when it comes to the details…

“I won’t give you the date because we’re trying to avoid too many people going!”

Is the constant press attention annoying?

“I don’t mind photographers, things like that, the only thing that really irritates me is the mistruths that are written, things that are wrong, which does happen pretty frequently.”

Was it always your intention to present when you finished playing?

“I always wanted to present because I thought, ‘“Well, there’s a little bit of an opening there’ because with the exception of Jimmy Hill and Bob Wilson there were no other footballers presenting.”

You’ve been presenting MOTD for 10 years now, how has the game changed in that time?

“I think there’s definitely a bigger interest in football now from women than there used to be. It just seemed to be massively different when we came back from Italia ‘90 and I think it’s grown since then.”

The atmosphere at matches is a little more family-friendly now, isn’t it?

“Yes, still people get overly passionate about things occasionally, but it’s definitely much, much milder than it used to be in the Seventies and Eighties.”

Looking ahead to the new season, will the Premiership be closer this time around?

“It will be a really tight title race because I think the playing field has been levelled now Manchester United have lost Ronaldo and Tevez.”

Ever tempted to get more involved – perhaps in an management role?

“Not really. I have a nice balance between family and work. I get a bit of time to myself here and there, whereas I suppose football management is the opposite.”

*Match of the Day returns to BBC One on Saturday, August 15, at 10pm*

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