Micah Richards and Alex Scott are not being lined up to replace Charlie Nicholas, Matt Le Tissier and Phil Thompson on Sky’s Soccer Saturday panel.
Sky took the controversial decision of axing long-time guests Nicholas, Le Tissier and Thompson last month as part of a summer shakeup on the programme.
The trio’s dismissal sparked suggestions that Richards and Scott would be brought in to replace them, but The Sun claim they will instead be used for match punditry duties.
Sky chiefs will not be appointing a permanent panel alongside host Jeff Stelling, with the likes of Matt Murray and Clinton Morrison expected to appear as well as retained guest Paul Merson.
Fans were highly critical of Sky’s decision to part company with Nicholas, Le Tissier and Thompson, who had worked for the broadcaster for close to 50 years combined.
Some took to social media to suggest they were only making way for black pundits such as Richards and Scott, which triggered a furious response from Arsenal legend Ian Wright.
“I’ve had to pull the car over – the racism is going through the roof today,” Wright said.
“Can someone answer me this: what does Micah Richards, Alex Scott, Sol Campbell, Clinton Morrison or any other black pundit have to do with Sky's decision to get rid of these guys?
“All because three middle-aged white guys got the sack… I kiss my teeth.
“Why are people upset? Alex Scott, for me, is easily one of the best-prepared pundits out there. Easily.
“Micah Richards is the most exciting pundit to hit the scene in years.
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“Keep their names out of your stinking unbrushed-teeth mouths.”
As part of the summer clearout at Sky, Scott Minto was also moved on after 13 years with the broadcaster.
The former Chelsea and West Ham defender joined at the end of his playing career and regularly fronted coverage of the EFL and La Liga.
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