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English footballing legend Gary Lineker has spoken out about racist abuse he suffered as a kid and during his footballing career because of his ‘darkish skin’.
The outspoken pundit was a guest on the High Performance Podcast where he revealed he was subject to bullying while a kid, and later in life by professional footballers.
The former England international who said he was ‘As English as they come’, described the abuse he copped because of the colour of his skin.
He told the podcast: “Without being good at sport, life would have been very different for me because I was, I think I would have been bullied at school, I was kind of marginally that way anyway because I was this tiny geeky kid, with darkish skin and I had pretty much racist abuse although I’m not, I’m as English as they come.
“All the time, all the time.”
However, he hinted that some known figures in the English sport may have also been culprits in throwing the abuse his way.
He added: “Even in professional football I had that a couple of times, I wouldn’t ever name any names.
“So I got that kind of nonsense, which was a bit weird.
“Whether that was part of something that made me, I don’t know, but other people might not be able to handle that.”
The Leicester City legend also spoke of not reaching puberty until he was 17, making changing in the dressing room ‘embarrassing at times’.
Lineker is a certified English legend, ranking fourth on the list of all-time international goalscorers for his country with 48 goals.
He had a remarkable career playing for the likes of Leicester City, Everton, Tottenham Hotspur, and Barcelona, however, has often ruffled a few feathers in his post-playing career.
Following his comments on the High Performance Podcast deputy leader of the Reclaim Party, Martin Daubney appeared on right-wing political broadcaster GB News to take aim at Lineker.
'Lineker is the ultimate hypocrite and I wish he just put one of his football socks in his gob'— GB News (@GBNEWS) June 21, 2022
Deputy leader of the Reclaim Party Martin Daubney takes aim at former England striker and broadcaster Gary Lineker, after he claimed he suffered racist abuse over his 'darkish skin.' pic.twitter.com/ARaoDec5vM
He said: “Lineker is a man who is taking on every form of victimhood possible, even when it’s clearly ludicrous.”
He added: “Lineker is the ultimate hypocrite and I wish he just put one of his football socks in his gob.”
Lineker has consistently used his platform to speak out against social problems and has been a stark supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and players taking a knee before matches in the Premier League.