MATT LE TISSIER was kicked out of Sky Sports along with fellow football experts Charlie Nicholas and Phil Thompson on Saturday.
The three longtime football pundits received the shoe on Tuesday in a remarkable gesture from the television company which has significantly downsized.
Sky told SunSport: “We are changing some parts of our football coverage – Matt, Charlie and Phil have done a great job for us over the years, and they will leave us our sincere thanks and best wishes.
Confirming his dismissal, Le Tissier wrote on Twitter: “I enjoyed my time at Sky Sports, time to look forward to the next challenge in life, thank you for the support over the years and a special thank you to l backroom team which includes @CazzaEccles @CarlyBassett @tvtrevstats among others, good luck everyone, have a nice day. ”
Thompson said, “I spent 22 years on Sky Sports. I enjoyed every minute of it with amazing people on the show and behind the scenes who made it the iconic show it is today. Good luck to Sky, Jeff, Merse and the new gang on Football Saturday. ”
Presenter Jeff Stelling will remain, as will Arsenal legend Paul Merson.
It is believed that the show’s panel was made up entirely of white males of a certain age, Sky felt the existing format of Soccer Saturday had run its course.
Sky has not announced who will replace the trio.
Stelling appeared upset by the news, writing on Twitter in response to Tissier: “One of my saddest days at Sky Sports with the departure of three of my best friends. They were part of a team which for me was the best. “”
END OF AN ERA
Former Southampton superstar and England ace Le Tissier, 51, was an extremely popular member of Stelling’s Saturday squad.
And ‘The God’ has forged a brilliant relationship with former Liverpool captain and assistant manager Thommo, 66, and ex-Celtic and Arsenal star Nicholas, 58.
The three have totaled almost 50 years of service to each other with Sky and will be sorely missed by the millions of wheelchair football fans who attended Gillette Soccer’s longtime show on Saturday.
Midfielder magician Le Tissier has spent his entire professional career with the Saints and it was one of the biggest mysteries in football why he only won eight caps in England.
He hung up his boots in 2003 before joining Sky’s expert panel soon after.
Former Reds skipper and England star Thompson has won 16 major titles with his beloved Liverpool, including seven Premier League titles, three European Cups, one FA Cup and two League Cup victories.
In 2001, Thommo was praised by fellow football expert Tony Cottee for saving his life when the Liverpool hero paid a doctor to examine his colleague before suffering a brain hemorrhage.
Having worked for Sky since 1998, when Thompson left his role as Gerard Houllier’s assistant at Liverpool in 2004, he has become a more important member of the team.
Scottish striker Nicholas has won two Premier League honors and a League Cup for Glasgow giants Celtic and a League Cup with the Gunners.
The 58-year-old playing career ended in 1996 before turning to the expert.
Le Tissier had written into his Sky contract that he did not have to wear a tie for weekend and midweek TV shows.
He recently made a splash on social media for wearing a Black Lives Matter badge on the show after suggesting to his half a million Twitter followers that he was against the idea.
Le Tissier also said he was taking a social media hiatus earlier this month when he was attacked by trolls online calling for Sky’s sacking.
The trolls have turned on the football specialist for criticizing the government’s handling of the Covid-19 crisis.
Father Le Tissier criticized his online reviews for trying to “ruin my life” and get me “sacked” before taking a Twitter break.
He wrote at the time: “You trolls and robots who try to put me down with your sarcastic remarks by trying to make it clear that I am an indifferent individual who has no empathy.
“You cannot be further from the truth and I am extremely sorry for you that there is so little joy in your life, you are resorting to this.