I speak like a man in the pub, that’s why I’m successful: Robbie Savage

  • Sumil Sudhakaran, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Feb 10, 2016 19:13 IST
Former Leicester City footballer Robbie Savage has been very successful as pundit and an entertainer. (Getty Images)

Who is Robbie Savage? A dancer, a TV pundit, a radio host or a wannabe actor? Or is he a former footballer? The question might seem ludicrous, and perhaps condescending, at first. But you often associate a person with his most successful venture, or the latest. By that rule, the Welshman is perhaps an entertainer and a TV pundit.

That, however, could be like saying the ocean is a collection of waves that drenches the shore.

Savage has played close to 200 games for Leicester City, and over 100 for Derby County. He has also played for Wales for a good number of times, that is before Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey made that sound cool. But the Savage that is talked about, or even valued, the most isn’t the former footballer, and that is no disrespect to his playing career. He simply has become more successful than anyone would have imagined in front of the camera.

Savage has stripped, tripped and grabbed his crotch on his way to becoming quite a star in the 2011 edition of the television programme, ‘Strictly Come Dancing’. Then he has had women holding a discussion on his posterior on camera, with him present and smiling as if he had won an Academy Award. Of late, as a TV pundit in football shows, he has interviewed, questioned and ridiculed footballers, coaches and whoever that comes in the vicinity of a stadium. He simply has been more entertaining than he ever was in shorts and boots.

Watch Savage’s moves here:

“It has been great fun. I have done ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ in England. You know, my work on the radio, I have had real fun. But you know, I lost my father to Alzheimer’s. So, I do a lot of charity work on that too. So it is going good,” Savage told Hindustan Times on Tuesday evening. Savage and Rio Ferdinand were in India as part of Sport Relief’s charity work with Naz Foundation.

The Welshman, however, says at the core, he is a football man. “Ah! The football. You ask any former player, you cannot replace being a footballer no matter what you do. Not even dancing with Ola.” Savage’s partner at ‘Strictly’ was model and dancer, Ola Jordan, who many men undoubtedly would yearn to shake a leg with.

“You just miss the camaraderie, what you have in the training room, you miss put your bodies through things you would never have imagined. Being a footballer is every boy’s dream, when there are so many people who want to have that dream, you feel proud. My kids don’t talk about my dance, they talk about daddy as a former football player. Which is great.”

Savage, however, is not too modest with his success as an entertainer and a pundit. He knows what makes him different, no matter you like it or not. “I think you have got to be honest. What I like about this sport, or any sport in general, is no matter you have played or not, you have an opinion. The man in the pub, the man in the street, everybody can have an opinion on a football player. You could be right, you could be wrong. I think how I have made my niche is to speak like the man in the pub who will sit there and have a go at people. I am making career by being honest, if that upsets somebody I don’t care.”

Upset he has, John Terry for one. Savage, however, thinks the Chelsea icon deserves a contract extension.

Savage’s cha cha cha could help him in Hollywood:

So what’s next for the Welshman? Acting? “Possible. Vinnie Jones is a friend of mine, he is a big actor. I don’t want to be like Vinnie Jones. I respect him a lot, he was a big footballer and has gone on to be a successful actor. But if I was like Vinnie… I don’t know.”

Does he think he can do it? “Look at me! I look like a film star.”

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