‘We all want to be Steve McQueen’: Gary Lineker on his MotD style, baggy jeans and who’ll win the league | Men’s fashion

If you have been to ask anybody taken with style to appoint a trendy male footballer in 2023, they could – relying on their era – namecheck Héctor Bellerín, Dominic Calvert-Lewin or David Beckham. However for many males watching Match of the Day on a Saturday evening, it will most likely be Gary Lineker. The previous footballer and host of the highlights present for nearly 25 years is a mode icon for tens of millions, whether or not he’s sporting a crisp shirt and Clark Kent glasses on the pundit sofa or Blundstone boots on a stroll along with his canine, Filbert.

Lineker has, in fact, been within the headlines for greater than his model lately. Due to his tweet criticising the federal government’s asylum coverage, he was suspended by the BBC. With Alan Shearer and Ian Wright boycotting the present in solidarity, Match of the Day was broadcast with none presenters on 11 March. Now again on the sofa, Lineker can settle into much less controversial territory – like engaged on an edit of garments for Subsequent. Right here, he chats about his outfit selections through the years, Match of the Day wardrobe insurance policies, that tweet and who’s going to win the Premier league.

Do you suppose you’ve change into a mode icon for a sure type of man?

I might by no means say that of myself. I’ve at all times been taken with garments and style. I take a look at some photos and I believe: “What the hell have been we pondering?” However I would even suppose that about [what I’m wearing today] in 20 years, if I’m nonetheless alive. Most footballers are into style, although. We’re a metrosexual lot. Take a look at the gamers or individuals I work with – Ian Wright loves his garments, Micah Richards loves garments. I might by no means describe myself as an icon, however I’m more than happy that you just put the query to me.

Are there any outfits you remorse?

Whenever you’ve been a participant within the public eye for a very long time, there are quite a bit. There’s one particularly on the 1990 World Cup. It was the ultimate week. We received to the semis and misplaced. I stayed on with Bobby Robson to obtain the Fifa honest play award. I wore this tremendous garish swimsuit, like a Versace quantity, so not me. That’s the factor with style – you look again on issues, a few of the jumpers [we wore]. There was additionally a shoot from after I was at Barcelona, when I’m in biking gear. It’s fairly simple to search out [on the internet].

Do you suppose it’s extra acceptable as a participant to be extra into style now?

They’re younger people who find themselves on first rate cash and may afford to splash out. It’s at all times been the case that individuals would costume to care what they appear to be; footballers are useless. There was George Finest, Bobby Moore. Now you will have individuals like Dominic Calvert-Lewin, who is sort of outlandish, Héctor Bellerín, James Maddison. It’s not what I might put on however I’m 40 years older than a few of these gamers. It’s a must to take into consideration that a bit as you become older.

Gary Lineker wearing his famous Blundstone boots.
Gary Lineker sporting his well-known Blundstone boots. {Photograph}: Neil Corridor/EPA

Calvert-Lewin has mentioned he has been ribbed by his teammates …

That may additionally go on. That’s simply a part of soccer, and it retains footballers grounded. There’s a lot mickey-taking, however I fairly admire the actual fact he wears what he wears.

How do you resolve what you put on on Match of the Day?

We now have no wardrobe. Everybody attire themselves. We simply get advised to go for “informal” – they don’t need jackets and ties – and it’s left to us. I at all times put on my very own garments and it’s the identical for everybody else on the present. For an FA Cup closing or the World Cup closing, it’s an enormous evening, it’s just like the Oscars, so we put on a swimsuit and tie. I really favor sporting a tie to only a swimsuit and shirt as a result of once you’re sitting down on TV, it tightens it up a bit. I lean ahead so much and after I try this, the shirt buttons can come open. The tie hides that.

Is there something it’s a must to keep away from?

Match of the Day is a inexperienced display screen so it’s like a digital actuality present. You may’t put on inexperienced, you’ll be able to’t put on white, you’ll be able to’t put on patterns. Meaning it’s unbelievably restrictive. The cameras can’t cope. You’ve mainly received plain darkish colors, or mild blue.

Lineker in presenting mode, wearing a jacket and shirt.
Lineker in presenting mode, sporting a jacket and shirt. {Photograph}: BBC

Do you propose forward collectively?

There’s no planning. We don’t have a WhatsApp group speaking in regards to the garments that we’re going to put on for the present. Final week, Alan Shearer and Danny Murphy each wore precisely the identical factor – off-white trousers with a black shirt. They regarded like the identical individual, and I ribbed them about it. We don’t go: “Ought to somebody get one other shirt?”

Who’s the best-dressed pundit?

Ian Wright. He actually cares and brings in two or three outfits. Micah and Jermaine are actually into their garments. Wrighty at all times appears to be like actually cool – like he hasn’t made an effort – however he appears to be like good.

Does he have varied glasses?

Sure, as do I. I did one thing some time in the past with Imaginative and prescient Categorical and I’ve received about 40 pairs so I match them with what I put on. As a result of I put on them on a regular basis now, it simply turns into one other style merchandise.

How is every part on Match of the Day? Are you all buddies once more?

We’re all buddies. We have been at all times buddies. It was my buddies who helped me out; it was lovely. But it surely shouldn’t have occurred like that, it was disproportionate.

Would you ship a tweet like that once more?

Most likely. I can’t assist myself, if it’s one thing I care about. I’m pretty cautious about what I say, and I’ll proceed to be. I believe I’m on the precise facet.

Saturday evening wasn’t the identical on 11 March, with out presenters.

It was very completely different. I watched the primary minute, like everybody else. There was no sound, it was so weird.

Who do you suppose goes to win the Premier League?

I tipped Arsenal from about November, however now I believe it’s 50/50 between them and Man Metropolis. I nonetheless suppose they’ve received an actual probability. If they will get something on Wednesday, I believe they’ll win it. In the event that they don’t, it’s tough. Metropolis can win each recreation as a result of they’re so good. Persons are saying Arsenal are bottling it and that’s nonsense. Two away attracts will not be bottling it. [This interview took place before Arsenal’s 3-3 draw to Southampton on Friday night]. I suppose they’ve given away leads, however away from house [those things can happen]. However they’re a great facet, a very good facet. If it’s not this season, it would come. They’re well-managed, good recruitment, nice younger gamers, they’ll be tremendous.

How would you describe your model nowadays?

I believe I’m pretty conservative. I’m probably not garish – due to my age, I don’t suppose I may get away with it. Wrighty can as a result of he’s naturally that method. We’ve gone by years of tight denims and now I’m so relieved they’ve gone saggy. I really feel rather more snug and higher in them. All of us need to be Steve McQueen. It’s by no means going to occur, however we will preserve attempting.

You need to get requested to work with manufacturers on a regular basis. Why did you resolve to work with Subsequent?

I believe it’s as a result of it’s British – from Leicester. After which they got here to us with a variety and I type of appreciated it. I by no means thought I might go along with white trousers, [but I’m tempted]. It’s fairly flattering that, in my grand previous age, I can nonetheless do one thing like this.

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