Why was Clive Tyldesley bumped off ITV’s prime football commentary slot?

CLIVE TYLDESLEY, known as the voice of England football, was axed from his position as ITV’s Prime commentator last July after 22 years in the role.

The 66-year-old spoke to the biggest ever British audience for a single game when the Three Lions lost to Croatia in the 2018 World Cup semi-final in front of 24.3million viewers.

Clive Tyldesley commentating during the Euro 2012

Why was Clive Tyldesley bumped from his role?

The Radcliffe born broadcaster’s voice has provided the backdrop to many memorable Champions League nights, as well as World Cups, European Championships, England friendlies and FA Cups.

Although ITV have stood Tyldesley down from his previous role, he will still be in the commentary box in a supporting role for Euro 2020. 

According to the Daily Mail, Tyldesley and ITV mutually agreed more than two years ago that his role would change at some point in 2020, because the broadcaster felt that this would be the right moment for a new leading voice.

The move away from ITV allowed Tyldesley to work for rival broadcasters throughout the 20/21 season including Amazon Prime Video.

Sam Matterface was in-turn announced as ITV’s new principal figure in place of Tyldesley for any future England games.

Tyldesley will be commentating for ITV at the Euro Championship

Tyldesley will be commentating for ITV at the Euro Championship

Tyldesley claimed he considered “storming out” of his meeting with ITV bosses after he was presented with the news.

However, after a change of heart, he realised he would still be able to cover top-tier matches and continue to fulfil his passion. 

Speaking to the Daily Telegraph, he said: “I could have stormed out, but I thought, no I quite fancy commentating on France versus Italy.

“No more England, so it will be a slightly strange thing.

“Once the decision has been taken you have to absorb it, realise it’s not the end of the world. It’s nice if you’re missed a little bit.”

Tyldesley also opened up on his replacement, Matterface, insisting he holds no bad ties with his 43-year-old replacement.

He added: “I don’t think ITV replaced me with a younger man for the sake of that, I think they replaced me with a different kind of commentator.

“And even though I was shocked by the decision and didn’t agree with it, I can accept it, because Sam commentates in a different way.

“But when I hear that somebody as capable as Mark Pougatch has been replaced on the BBC by somebody who has got a younger voice, but broadcasts in the same way, only not as well, I can’t fathom that out at all.


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