Gary Lineker forced to delete 'badly judged' tweet about Chloe Kelly's shirtless celebration

Lineker, a legendary striker and commentator, wrote on Twitter, 'The @Lionesses have only gone and done it, and Kelly is England’s heroine, bra none'


                            Gary Lineker forced to delete 'badly judged' tweet about Chloe Kelly's shirtless celebration
Social media wasn't amused by Gary Lineker's (L) play on words about Chloe Kelly's (R) goal celebration (Shaun Botterill/Alex Pantling/Getty Images)
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Gary Lineker deleted a tweet in which he made a 'sexist' remark about English footballer Chloe Kelly's goal celebration during the Euro 2022 championship game on Sunday, July 31. According to the Daily Mail, after scoring the winning extra-time goal to give England a 2-1 lead over Germany, Kelly took off her shirt, to which the legendary striker wrote on Twitter, "The @Lionesses have only gone and done it, and Kelly is England’s heroine, bra none."

The post sparked severe social media backlash. Netizens were quick to hit back at the BBC's highest-paid presenter, branding the comment as ‘casual sexism’ and ‘moronic,’ leading Lineker to delete the tweet. One person wrote, "Seriously Gary? An epic win, a game-changer for women's sport, a call to arms for young girls who have been told they can't. And you minimize this glory down to a joke about a woman's clothing/underwear. Casual sexism is rife here and the @Lionesses deserve better." 

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"What a disappointing tweet. What these women have done today is epic and so important for young girls throughout the country. You've reduced it to sexism. Would you have talked about the men's underwear if they'd won tonight?" another added. Someone wrote, “It’s just yet another example of casual sexism. Why mention her bra at all? Why not just congratulate her on the goal? Women put up with these kinds of 'jokes' all the time and we’re fed up with it.” "It’s a pity because it was a historic win. On the men’s team chased. It’s important we call out the normalized daily misogyny,” yet another person added. 

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Many asked Lineker to apologize for his insensitive remark. Karen Ingala Smith, chief executive of the Nia charity campaigning against violence aimed at women, wrote, "@GaryLineker please apologize for and condemn the sexist responses to your now deleted badly judged tweet.” However, several defended Lineker, stating there was nothing wrong with his statement. One user said, "Literally nothing sexist about what Lineker wrote. She literally had her bra on show."

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"I'm certainly no fan of lineker.. but I can't see what's wrong with this little play on words.. am I missing something? Genuinely,” another user added. Lineker also later defended his use of language, stating that he uses such language often in his tweets. He said, "It was just a play on words given the celebration. I do rubbish like that constantly on here, including on men’s football. I’ve deleted it as many people didn't see the game so missed the context." 

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