Former footballer Stan Collymore has publicly accused the BBC of hypocrisy after claiming that an offer to appear on Match of the Day 2 this season has been rescinded after he made a controversial remark on Twitter about the Falkland Islands earlier this summer.
The footballer claims that he was asked in May to make some appearances on the show for its coverage of this 2014/15 season but was then dropped after his Falklands tweet drew complaints to the BBC from members of the public.
But following reports that he was no longer to appear on the show he has written a lengthy attack on Twitter, in which he says that a BBC producer told him he was too much of a “controversial figure” for the show following his Falklands tweet.
The tweet said: “Falklands? Wasn’t anyone’s. We just thieved it, as we do. What glory, what triumph. A ****ing island with sheep. Rule Britannia”. It drew widespread complaints including a protest by a veterans group outside the offices of his employer TalkSport.
However, on Twitter Collymore has noted a number of other “controversial” figures who have worked with the BBC in the past including Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson.
“If Jeremy Clarkson can work for them, so can I,” he writes.
In his latest piece, Collymore also admits he still harbours hopes of appearing on Match of the Day 2: “I look forward to appearing several times on MOTD2 this season to add the insight, passion and liveliness to a great show as the producer asked me to do.”
A BBC spokesperson said: “There are no present plans for Stan to appear but we are always in contact with potential guests about ad hoc appearances.”
A Corporation source said that Collymore’s appointment on the show had never been announced.
Ben has worked as a professional journalist specialising in TV and the arts for nearly twenty years. After a two year stint on local newspapers in the mid 1990s, he spent more than 5 years as the broadcast reporter at the Stage newspaper. Following that he enjoyed staff reporting positions at the Sunday Mirror and the Sunday Times breaking stories and writing features before settling as a full time freelance writing for an array of newspapers and magazines - but mainly for the Guardian, Evening Standard, Broadcast, Independent and the New Statesman where he wrote a column.