GARY Lineker had no choice but to take a pay cut, it has been claimed.
Match of the Day host Gary, 58, said this week he had offered to accept a reduction — and told BBC bosses to trim his £1.75million salary.
He said: “It’s the right thing to do. I’m currently negotiating a new contract with them and I’m volunteering to take less.”
But BBC insiders say that, in line with other top earners, he would not have been offered a renewal at the same pay level.
A source said: “Gary’s deal is up for renewal and that process is ongoing, but the BBC are clear that top earners will have to take cuts and he is no exception.
“The pressure to make savings is intense. It isn’t an option not to take a hit in the current climate.”
Chris Evans was the BBC’s highest earner before he left Radio 2 last year[/caption]
An insider added: “Hopefully a deal will be struck soon.”
Lineker — said to be worth around £30million — took a £500,000 drop in 2013 to continue in the role.
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Others who have taken hits to stay include Jeremy Vine, 54, and Nicky Campbell, 58.
Gary became the Beeb’s best-paid star after Chris Evans, 53, left Radio 2 last year.
A BBC spokesman declined to comment.
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