Check your Twitter trends whenever a big game is on BT Sport and the chances are you’ll spot Michael Owen’s name flying high.
The ex-Liverpool and England forward’s football punditry seems to rub fans the wrong way – but he’s got one high-profile fan in the form of another divisive analyst, Robbie Savage.
Speaking to Digital Spy, Savage insisted that “if you listen to what Michael Owen actually says, he speaks a lot of sense”.
“It’s unfair to pick Michael out, whoever you are you will be the top trend in Britain for your commentary because everybody has an opinion,” he said. “Everybody is allowed an opinion and you just call a game.”
Savage said that he thinks fans have pre-conceived ideas about commentators and won’t be swayed by their opinions.
Of Owen’s punditry skills Savage added: “I can tell you he works exceptionally hard, he cares and it’s unfair on him. You could pick any pundit who will trend on Twitter for their co-commentary. If you actually listen to what he says, he calls the game right.”
Maybe it’s all in the delivery, as the above video of Owen narrating a helicopter flight over Dubai demonstrates.
Who’s the best pundit in Savage’s eyes? He singled out a recently-retired England international for special praise.
“I think Gary Neville was fascinating on Monday Night. I like Jamie Carragher too, but I just think Rio Ferdinand – especially when he’s on the Champions League on BT – is a fantastic pundit,” he said.
As for future tips, Savage states, keep a close eye on Joey Barton. When the Burnley man retires, Savage says the Marmite midfielder has what it takes to get fans talking.
“I think he’s got a strong opinion – I think he could be the new me,” Savage said ominously.