GARY LINEKER regrets his public feud and frosty relationship with former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
The Scot is a well-publicised critic of the BBC and made a remark about the Match of the Day presenter in a national television interview with Sir David Frost in 2008.
Fiercely disagreeing with Ferguson’s “super-injunction” comment, the ex-striker would later earn an apology.
And Lineker has now explained that the issue stemmed from a magazine interview which he claims altered the chronology of his quotes.
Speaking to the Daily Mail in March of last year, the 60-year-old recalled: “I’m a forgiving soul and I sense that Sir Alex, er, isn’t… We’ve got history. We’ve fallen out a few times over the years, silly little things really.
“It started with a magazine interview. I was at the BBC and I was talking about managers getting the hump after games, talking in general terms about the pressures and the fact they get paranoid and think we’re all against them.
“And then they asked me about Sir Alex and I talked about him.
“But in the piece all those quotes were stuck together, so it made it look as if it was all about Sir Alex. So I saw it and thought, ‘Oh no, f****** hell’ — so I wrote to him. Old school.
“Tried to explain it and that I was sorry it had come out wrong. He wrote back with two lines that basically said: I don’t believe you.
I got a sort of begrudging, Sir Alex-type apology.”
“And then he did a long interview with Sir David Frost and I was watching it at home and Frost brought it up, the magazine interview. And Sir Alex was saying, ‘Oh yeah, he’s not whiter than white like they all think, he’s got super-injunctions all over the place’.
“And I’m sitting there thinking, ‘What? My God, you can’t say that. It’s not true, it’s not even close’.
“And I got a sort of begrudging, Sir Alex-type apology. And I could have gone down the legal route because it was bad.”
Lineker added that he regrets how things have gone with Fergie, who is the subject of a new Amazon documentary, although they have remained civil in their subsequent meetings.
He noted: “I’ve bumped into him occasionally.
“The next time I saw him was at Sir Bobby Robson’s memorial and we were the two speakers, stuck in a room together, and he was all right. I don’t bear grudges.
“I just brought the subject around to horse racing, which I know nothing about. I know loads of people he’s been brilliant with. I just think it’s a shame.”