Professional footballers have voted former Manchester United and England defender Gary Neville as the pundit they respect the most, with a majority of 70%, following a players’ poll taken by magazine FourFourTwo.
The vote was taken from 123 footballers currently playing in the Premier League, Football League and Scottish league and were asked their opinions on everything from racism in the sport to refeering, and football pundits.
Gary Neville emerged as the overwhelming favourite, with 70% claiming he was their favourite and his co-pundit Jamie Carragher, Liverpool legend, who appears alongside him for Sky Sports, was voted second with 15%.
During their playing career, Neville and Carragher were part of two contrasting factions, and didn’t have the best of relationships, though the two have won many fans since their switch to punditry following retirement. A current Championship player said, “Neville and Carragher are so good, I enjoy watching them more than the game,” while a League One player claimed they have “taken punditry to another level.”
At the bottom end of the poll, much maligned Robbie Savage and another former Liverpool player, Danny Murphy, could only take one per cent each and a different Championship player said of the former, “I don’t think the magazine could print what I think about Savage’s punditry.”
Former Newcastle United goalscorer Alan Shearer came third, with 10% of the vote, after regular appearances on BBC’s flagship football programme Match of the Day, with former Arsenal player Lee Dixon taking three per cent.