Gary Lineker has addressed the growing speculation on social media (Picture:Getty / BBC)
The 61-year-old sportsman has fronted the BBC’s flagship football programme for 23 years, however, after comedian James confirmed his exit from the Late Late Show – fans were convinced the Gavin and Stacey star will take the reins.
Putting all the rumours to bed, the former striker playfully tweeted: ‘Getting a number of texts from friends asking if I’m quitting @BBCMOTD after reports on Twitter of my possible successor.
‘So it’s only fair I give you the bad news now: I’m afraid I still have 3 years to run on my contract, so you’re stuck with me for a while.’
Guess that settles it!
Gary’s tweet sparked a big reaction from fans and fellow celebrities, with rapper AJ Tracey writing: ’30 more years hopefully.’
While journalist Kevin Palmer quipped: ‘But carpool karaoke is being added to Match of the Day next season right?’
According to reports, James turned down a £40 million offer, but insisted his final outing will ‘go out with a bang.’
‘He could have gone down the cash route with Gavin and Stacey, taken the cheque and written it forever, but he chose not to. This is the same,’ said one insider.
A different source added: ‘James wants to write, make films and he loves the theatre. He is only in his early forties. There is a lot more out there.’
Gary has presented Match of the Day since 1999 (Picture: REX)
James Corden recently announced he’s stepping down from the Late Late Show (Picture: Getty)
The 43-year-old presenter extended his contract with CBS to present the show for one more year, and he admitted it’s been a life-changing period.
‘Seven and half years ago I started hosting this show and there’s no other way to put it, it has changed my life,” he added. ‘I love it, I love all the people that work here, I am so proud of what we’ve achieved, it’s been beyond my wildest, wildest dreams.
‘When I started this journey it was always going to be just that, a journey, an adventure.
‘I never saw as it as my final destination, and I never want this show to overstay its welcome, I love making it and I really think in a year from now that will be a good time to move on and see what’s out there.’
Metro.co.uk has reached out to James Corden’s reps for comment.