World of Sport

Lee Dixon to leave BBC football

World of Sport

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The BBC's future football coverage will not feature Lee Dixon after the former Arsenal defender announced he is to leave the company.

The 48-year-old revealed the end of an eight-year association with the BBC via Twitter.

"Sad to be leaving BBC," Dixon wrote. "Nothing lasts forever. New challenges ahead. Loved my time there. Wonderful people... Just time to move on."

The news has come as a disappointment to many football fans, who feel that the BBC's commentary and punditry team has become too cosy and lacks insight.

Alan Hansen has come under fire for reported wages of £40,000 a week in the past year - mainly to appear on Match of the Day on Saturday evenings - while his former Liverpool team-mate Mark Lawrenson was criticised for his co-commentary role during Euro 2012. Fans have also questioned former England striker Alan Shearer's preparation and insight.

Dixon, a former full-back, was considered an exception.

"Beeb's lost its best-by-far football pundit in Lee Dixon," tweeted John Wilson. "A proper analyst left on sub's bench too often. Shame."

"Thought Lee Dixon was one of the best parts of BBC's football coverage," added Annie Eaves. "Seems odd they've let him go."

As for Dixon himself, rumours have it that he will join BT's team when they gain Premier League rights in August 2013.

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