Clive Tyldesley believes that commentators should, a certain times, be allowed to say ‘f***’. 

The legendary commentator led ITV’s coverage of football for 22 years across five World Cups and five European Championships. Tyldesley was replaced by Sam Matterface at the broadcaster in 2020 but he has remained working for the likes of CBS Sports and Amazon Prime. 

The seasoned vet has attracted a cult following for his memorable phrases during icon moments but he nevertheless reckons there are times when eloquent rhetoric just won’t cut it. 

And he shared his view that commentators should be permitted to use explicit language during those times of heightened drama. 

‘I just think once a season a commentator should be allowed to use the F-word without losing their job.’ He said on the Football Authorities podcast. ‘Some goals, some moments, some misses, simply demand a swear word — the swear word — to capture their full impact.’

Clive Tyldesley believes that commentators should, a certain times, be allowed to say ‘f***’

Tyldesley claimed that sometimes commentators 'need to say what you see'. Pictured: England players celebrate after going 2-0 up against Germany in the round of 16 at Euro 2020

Tyldesley claimed that sometimes commentators ‘need to say what you see’. Pictured: England players celebrate after going 2-0 up against Germany in the round of 16 at Euro 2020

 He added: ‘I would need to choose the moment carefully . . . but sometimes you need to say what you see.’

The 69-year-old remains with ITV and will form part of their Euro 2024 team in Germany alongside Sam Matterface, Seb Hutchinson, Pien Meulensteen and Joe Speight. Co-commentators for the tournament include former footballers Lee Dixon, Ally McCoist and Andros Townsend.

Tyldesley has previously spoken about the responsibility that comes with his role as the voice of football for a generation of fans. 

‘Occasionally, I had people say “you’ve been the soundtrack of my youth” and when you’re 68 years of age and maybe not getting as much work as you used to you think “is that a compliment or not?”‘ he told the Mirror in 2022. 

‘But the people who make an impression on us when we’re young are people we carry with us through our lives. This notion you need to be 25 to broadcast to 25 year olds, I can’t accept that.

‘I’m a parent, I’ve got to be able to communicate with young people. I might have grandchildren one day. You’ve got to be good enough and broad-minded enough and smart enough to work out what the audience is and broadcast to it.’

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