Gary Lineker 'gutted' as presenter ruled out of FA Cup duties after positive Covid test


Gary Lineker has revealed he is ‘gutted’ to withdraw from the BBC’s FA Cup coverage after testing positive for Covid. The presenter and former England international hailed the vaccine programme for ensuring that he will not be ‘seriously ill’ with the virus. 

Lineker announced that he had felt unwell on a flight home from South Africa and later returned a positive test result.  

It means that he will miss the BBC’s coverage of the FA Cup fourth round over the weekend, including his boyhood Leicester City’s clash with rivals Nottingham Forest.  

The 61-year-old praised the efforts of scientist for creating a vaccine to protect against serious illness.  

“Long time since I got between the lines,” Lineker tweeted.  

“Arrived back from Cape Town early this morning. Started feeling a little unwell on the flight.  

“Sorry to those sitting near, although I wore a mask for the entirety of the journey as didn’t eat. Hope I didn’t pass it on to anyone on BA42.”

As well-wishes streamed in, Lineker said in a further series of tweets: “Thanks for all the well wishes. You’re a lovely lot.

“Thanks too, to the brilliant scientists for the vaccines that should mean I won’t be seriously ill and clog up our brilliant NHS. 

“Gutted to miss our live @BBCSport FA Cup 4th round ties though. Always the most fun.”

The BBC broadcast coverage of several cup clashes from Saturday to Monday. 

They kick off their coverage at 12:30PM on Saturday with Chelsea’s tie against League One outfit Plymouth Argyle and West Ham’s visit to non-league Kidderminster Harriers. 

Cambridge United host Luton Town later in the day. 

Lineker’s boyhood club Leicester, the reigning FA Cup champions, then visit Nottingham Forest on Sunday in front of the national broadcaster’s cameras. 

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