Race to sign Owen hots up – but it's Strictly and I'm a Celebrity doing battle!
12:27 GMT, 3 April 2013
17:12 GMT, 3 April 2013
Michael Owen may have failed his screen test to head BT Sport’s new analysis team — but the BBC and ITV are still in a fight to sign him up.
It has been reported that the Stoke striker, who has recently announced he will retire at the end of the season, is at the centre of TV battle between the makers of Strictly Come Dancing and I’m a Celebrity.
Both networks are apparently trying to sign for the autumn series of both shows.
Dancefloor or jungle How Owen might look on Strictly (left) and I'm a Celebrity
In demand: The clamour to sign up Owen is in full swing
Retiring: The former England striker, now at Stoke, will call it a day next month
Owen is to become a BBC television and radio pundit in his retirement, having made occasional appearances on Match of the Day already this season.
BT Sport, who need a marquee signing from the dressing room to head the analysts team for their Premier League coverage next season, could have been expected to jump at the chance to sign such an illustrious footballer as Owen, whose services have been strongly touted to them.
But the word inside BT headquarters in the Olympic Park is that Owen’s ‘monotone’ displays on the BBC have been considered ‘poor’, although it will help Owen’s Beeb future that their lead presenter Gary Lineker has been supportive.
The first confirmed pundit appointment
for Owen is at Royal Ascot. Racehorse owner and breeder Owen is on a
panel of experts who will be giving tips to the 570-a-head patrons of
the prime Bessborough Restaurant on the Thursday of the Royal meeting in
Owen is also planning to launch a player agency business when he retires from professional football at the end of this season.
Frozen out: Owen has had limited first-team opportunities at Stoke
Stoke City centre forward Owen, who has previously starred for Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester United, will hang up his boots at the end of his season, bringing the curtain down on a difficult few years in which he has sustained several serious injuries that have chronically limited his game-time.
In a blog on his website former England man Owen explained: ‘On July 1, I propose to set up Michael Owen Management Ltd. focusing on guiding young players through their careers and offering them advice at every juncture of what can be a career full of pitfalls.’