Julian Warren leads next Soccer Saturday presenter betting
Following Jeff Stelling’s final appearance this weekend, rumours have already started as to who will be his replacement as the next Soccer Saturday presenter.
Julian Warren, who has stepped in for Stelling on numerous occasions, heads the market at 15/8 with Coral, but Saturday Social host Adam Smith is another name strongly linked with the role, and he is next in the Soccer Saturday presenter betting at 9/4.
Coral’s Lewis Knowles said: “Following Jeff Stelling on Soccer Saturday will be an unenviable task for whoever gets the role, but Sky Sports have some fantastic presenters on their roster.
“Rumours have been circulating that Sky will look to recruit within, so it’s no surprise to see Julian Warren and Adam Smith at the head of the betting.
“Michelle Owen did a fantastic job hosting the EFL play-offs this weekend, and while she might not have been on many people’s minds for the job previously, there were plenty of calls on social media over the weekend for her to be next in the hot seat.”
Stelling announced last month his intention to stand down as anchor of the Sky Sports programme and earmarked the final day of the Premier League season on Sunday afternoon as his last show.
After touching tributes from colleagues past and present, Stelling was given a lengthy standing ovation by the punditry panel of Paul Merson, Clinton Morrison, Kris Boyd and Michael Dawson.
A final farewell from Jeff Stelling ❤️ pic.twitter.com/CoqTa2qjWw
— Sky Sports (@SkySports) May 28, 2023
Stelling, who had planned to quit last year before reversing that decision, briefly hid his emotions with a mask of himself and quipped: “This is tricky because I’ve changed my mind – just kidding. I haven’t changed my mind this time.”
Stelling was clearly moved by the highlights package Sky televised in the final minutes of the show after Everton retained their top-flight status and confirmed the relegations of Leeds and Leicester.
Merson, Alan Mullery, Frank McLintock, Clive Allen, Charlie Nicholas, Phil Thompson and Matt Le Tissier passed on their well wishes and congratulations, as did Chris Kamara, who in a nod to the catchphrase that has become synonymous with the pair and the show, said: “You are unbelievable, Jeff!”
Stelling looked back fondly on his 30-plus years with Sky, in which he not only covered football but live snooker, darts, greyhound racing, pool, and thanked everyone with whom he had worked.
In his final monologue, he added: “It’s been the best job that anybody could possibly have wished for. My wife takes great pleasure in saying ‘You are the luckiest man ever to take a breath’ and you know what? I don’t tell her this often but she’s right.
“The principle success of Soccer Saturday is you lot at home, who have given us unswerving support – both for the programme and for me personally.
“So that’s it. Soccer Saturday will be back next season. I’ll be watching – when Hartlepool are not playing. From me, goodbye.”
Next Soccer Saturday presenter odds
15/8 Julian Warren
9/4 Adam Smith
4/1 David Jones
9/2 Mark Chapman
5/1 Michelle Owen
8/1 Micah Richards
12/1 Laura Woods