Neville has an acid tongue when the mood takes him.

7 of Gary Neville’s most memorable punditry put-downs: PlayStation, bottle jobs…

Gary Neville is arguably the most ubiquitous football pundit in the country, meaning some of his witter criticisms have become part of the sport’s heritage.

Since ending his playing career in 2011, Neville has become a giant of Sky Sports’ coverage and manages to slip some brilliant one-liners into his studious and strident work.

Here are seven of the former Manchester United and England defender’s most acidic quotes from the comfort of the studio.


As Chelsea conspired to lose the 2024 League Cup final to Liverpool’s reserves, Neville didn’t hold back after Virgil van Dijk scored the winning goal in extra-time.

“Klopp’s kids against the blue billion-pound bottle-jobs,” he said, instantly upstaging Peter Drury and two hours of the commentator’s florid poetry in the process.

David Luiz

You all remember this one.

Months after Luiz joined Chelsea in 2011, Neville described his style of defending with the immortal words: “It is like he is being controlled by a 10-year-old on a PlayStation.”

What’s not widely known is that the pundit has since expressed regret over his choice of language.

“I don’t like the Playstation one now when I look back,” Neville said in 2020. “At the time it probably cemented me, in some ways, as a pundit who was willing to put humour with analysis, with commentary.

“I look back and I think David Luiz has got a wife, he’s got children, he’s got family, he’s been a fantastic player for Brazil, he’s had a great career, and that line sticks with him.

“So every time he gets mentioned he gets called a PlayStation player, and I didn’t want that from it.”

Gabriel Agbonlahor

Rumour has it that Agbonlahor has never fully recovered from his Monday Night roasting at Neville’s hands, condemning himself to chatting semi-literate nonsense on talkSPORT until the Earth is submerged into the Sun.

Gary Neville on Monday Night Football in 2015 (credit: @SkySportsRetro Twitter)

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Xherdan Shaqiri

In an industry where cutting comments are commonplace, Neville’s analysis of Shaqiri in 2018 made people sit up and blow their cheeks out with astonishment.

“I’m not a fan of Shaqiri to be honest with you,” he told ITV before Switzerland’s match with Brazil at that summer’s World Cup.

“He could score the goal of the tournament and he could have the most amazing game tonight. But he could also be there for three matches, do nothing and just amble and waddle around.

“To be honest with you with him, players like that I can’t have to be honest with you, I struggle with it.”

Bastian Schweinsteiger

Schweinsteiger failed to live up to the hype at Manchester United, with one infamous display against Arsenal in 2015 living long in the memory.

The World Cup-winning midfielder was played in an unfamiliar advanced role against the Gunners and was simply ground into fine dust during United’s 3-0 defeat.

Speaking after the game, Neville said: “In this game they got concerned about Cazorla. And Cazorla, he had him on a lead.

“It was like a man with a ball saying to a dog ‘come to get it off me, come to get it off me’, and as soon as he gets near him, he throws it off to Mertesacker.

“It’s like ‘Come on, come on doggie’. He’s toying with him, Cazorla.”

Boris Johnson

As England progressed to the Euro 2020 final, politicians who’d spent the summer castigating the players for taking the knee were falling over themselves to climb on the bandwagon.

But Neville dismantled any attempt by this government to cash in on the success of Gareth Southgate’s team.

“The standard of leaders in this country in the last couple of years has been poor,” he said on ITV after the semi-final victory over Denmark.

“Looking at that man there [Gareth Southgate], it’s everything a leader should be – respectful, humble, tell[s] the truth, genuine. He’s fantastic, Gareth Southgate, he really is unbelievable.”

Ousmane Dembele

While the 2022 World Cup final is now recalled as one of the best football matches ever, it mustn’t be overlooked that France refused to make a game of it for a full 80 minutes.

At half-time, with Argentina leading 2-0, Neville tore into Dembele after his clumsy challenge gifted the opposition a penalty.

“It’s embarrassing,” he said on ITV. “I’m torn between one, I think it’s a soft penalty but also stupidity and to get on the wrong side, you deserve to be found out.

“Dembele gets found out, he’s looking for it, he knows what he’s doing but Dembele gets played like a little boy.”

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