Gary Winston Lineker, OBE (/ˈlɪnᵻkər/; born 30 November 1960) is an English retired footballer and current sports broadcaster. He holds England's record for goals in FIFA World Cup finals, with 10 scored. Lineker's media career began with the BBC, where he has presented the flagship programme Match of the Day since the late 1990s. He has also worked for Al Jazeera Sports, Eredivisie Live, NBC Sports Network and currently hosts BT Sport's coverage of the UEFA Champions League.
Lineker began his football career at Leicester City. and 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. Lineker's final club was Nagoya Grampus Eight and he retired in 1994 after two seasons at the Japanese side.
Lineker made his England debut in 1984, earning 80 caps and scoring forty-eight goals over an eight-year international career, finishing as England's second highest scorer behind Bobby Charlton, before he was overtaken by Wayne Rooney. 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. He is also the only player to have won the English golden boot with three different clubs (Leicester City, Everton and Tottenham Hotspur).
Even though he enjoyed a long career, 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. In a senior career which spanned 16 years and 567 competitive games, Lineker scored a total of 282 goals at club level. Added to the 48 goals he scored in internationals, he managed a total of 330 goals. After his retirement from football he was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame. He later led a consortium that invested in his old club Leicester, saving it from bankruptcy, and was appointed honorary vice-president.Close