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Alan Shearer says last week ‘was difficult' as Gary Lineker returns to BBC

Gary Lineker, pictured, as her arrived at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester to present live coverage of the FA Cup quarter-final between Manchester City and Burnley on the BBC. (Danny Lawson/PA)
Charlotte McLaughlin, PA Senior Entertainment Reporter

Gary Lineker has returned to live presenting on the BBC as part of the broadcaster’s coverage of the FA Cup quarter-final between Manchester City and Burnley.

The 62-year-old was told to step back from hosting Match Of The Day (MOTD) over a tweet comparing the language used to launch a new Government asylum seeker policy with 1930s Germany.

He was joined in the studio on Saturday by Alan Shearer – who said last weekend was “really difficult” – and fellow former England footballer turned pundit Micah Richards.

Shearer reflected after he and BBC Sport colleagues walked out in “solidarity” with Lineker, with highlight shows significantly shorter than usual and aired without presentation or commentary.

The 52-year-old said: “I just need to clear up and wanted to say how upset we were (to) all the audiences who missed out on last weekend.

“It was a really difficult situation for everyone concerned – and through no fault of their own, some really great people in TV and in radio were put in an impossible situation and that wasn’t fair.

“So it’s good to get back to some sort of normality and be talking about football again.”

Following on, Lineker said: “Absolutely, (I) echo (those) sentiments.”

The former England striker earlier said it was “great to be here”.

Later in the evening, broadcaster Mark Chapman is set to host the MOTD highlights show.

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