Long-serving BBC 5 live football commentator Mike Ingham has covered his last match as 5 live’s chief football correspondent.
Mike took on the role in 1991 and has commentated on many of the biggest sporting events, including eight World Cups. He’s been the voice of football on the network since its days as BBC Radio Five.
He signed off last night during the final between Germany and Argentina, with John Murray lined up to replace him.
Jonathan Wall, Controller Radio 5 live told RadioToday: “Mike was the ultimate voice of calm, reason and authority amidst all the football world noise. I was willing on a dramatic late winner in the world cup final to allow him the perfect send off, and Germany duly obliged! I am so pleased that he will be back on 5 live throughout next season hosting football specials.”
5 live aired a special hour-long documentary on Friday evening called “Mike Ingham – The World Cup Years” where Mike looked back on all the World Cup tournaments he has worked on. From Mexico 86 through to Brazil 2014 he recalled the players, goals and personal memories that he has witnessed from the commentary box.
He’ll now work on more studio-based programmes, continuing to be part of the 5 live team. “I used to be the presenter of Sport On 2, so I’m really looking forward to being back in the studio,” Mike said. “After commentating for 30-odd years, I am coming off the road and going back to my roots.”
Richard Burgess, head of radio sport at the BBC said: “It is fitting that Mike is calling time after a World Cup full of incident, shocks and stories. Mike has set the standard in authoritative and intelligent football analysis, while his commentary partnership with Alan Green has become legendary. There are few voices in the modern media which elicit such respect and attention. Put simply – when Mike speaks about football, you stop and listen.”
Photo: Mike Ingham (right) with Alan Green in 2006