JEFF STELLING CONFIRMS HE’S STAYING ON SOCCER SATURDAY

Sky Soccer Saturday host Jeff Stelling has confirmed he’s staying with the show despite popular pundits Matt Le Tissier, Charlie Nicholas and Phil Thompson being dropped.

The trio have been told they’ll no longer appear on the long-running latest scores and goals show which had led to speculation that Stelling may also quit.

Stelling had further fuelled rumours he was considering leaving the show by tweeting: “Thanks for all the messages of support – and even for most of those who have a different view as I believe in free speech.

“So far no discussions have taken place, no decisions made. Only I know what I am thinking but it is important to listen to all arguments. Thanks again”

But now Stelling has confirmed he will remain as the host of the show. When asked about his plans on Twitter he replied: “First show is Saturday at 1430 with a panel that reflects its Carabao Cup. First normal show Sat 12th. I will be there for both. One of my favourite Queen songs and lyrics’ The Show must go On’. “

Despite deciding to remain in the hot seat, frontman Stelling wasn’t happy at the changes. He had previously tweeted: “One of my saddest days at Sky Sports with the departure of three of my best mates. They have been part of the team that for me was the best.”

Sky failed to give a reason for the trio being pushed out saying only in a statement: “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 leave us with our sincere thanks and very best wishes.”

Matt Le Tissier took to Twitter after the news broke to say he’d enjoyed his time at Sky and it was time “to look forward to life’s next challenge”. He thanked everyone for their support and praised the backroom team behind the scenes at Soccer Saturday.

Phil Thompson also aired his feelings on Twitter. “I’ve had a great 22 years with Sky Sports,” he said. “Enjoyed every minute with some amazing people on the show and behind the scenes which made it the iconic show it is today. Good luck to Sky, Merse and the new gang on Soccer Saturday,” he tweeted.

Sky has yet to confirm the new line-up, but in a further shake-up EFL presenter Scott Minto took to Twitter to disclose he too has been dropped by the broadcaster after 13 years.

He said “while the decision wasn’t mine” he leaves Sky with nothing but fond memories. He praised his Sky colleagues and hinted he had a new job lined up.

“I am hugely excited by the future and will be sharing news soon of my next project. I look forward to being back on screen very soon,” he tweeted.

And three other shows have been shelved for the new season with The Sunday Supplement, Goals on Sunday and The Debate magazine shows all dropped from the schedule, although Sky hasn’t ruled out them returning next season.

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