Jermaine Jenas never made much of a splash during his playing career, but the same cannot be said for his media exploits since retirement.
Once known as nothing more than a run-of-the-mill Premier League midfielder, Jenas has blossomed into the most charismatic man on television in his post-playing career, blessing our screens with a vibrant personality, cutting-edge analysis and vast knowledge of every pie he has his fingers in.
Or so he likes to think.
The reality is that poor Jermaine is a little bit irritating. Very irritating, actually. For a man who made a living from playing elite-level football, he does an exceptional job of resembling the guy at the office who asks you about ‘the match’ knowing full well he’s never kicked a ball or watched football in his life.
Jenas isn’t a bad person, but we simply see and hear him far too often. If he’s not chewing our ears off with mundane musings on live football, he’s hosting the One Show or being drafted in at Match of the Day, where he is very obviously being groomed to take over from Gary Lineker.
And if that wasn’t enough, he’s since taken the lead on Formula E for TNT Sports. Apologies in advance to any football fans who dabble in motorsport.
Truthfully, Jenas and his mind-numbing takes on all things football live in our heads rent-free. We’ve compiled a list of his worst offences.
Repeatedly getting Jason Steele’s name wrong
If I had £5 for every time Jenas mistook Brighton stopper Jason Steele for Luke Steele – a fellow goalkeeper who was once on the books at Manchester United – then I’d be writing this from the comfort of my own private jet.
A quick lapse is fair enough. But as Brighton took on Wolves at the beginning of 2024, Jenas spent the best part of half an hour on commentary making the same mistake. The name is right in front of you, Jermaine. They are two entirely different people.
‘Securing the coin’
Whatever the hell this is.
Jermaine Jenas watching Gary Lineker criticise the government pic.twitter.com/m7bmQNaorv
— Ciaran (@Ciaran2607) March 10, 2023
As Newcastle were harshly given a penalty against them away to Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League, TNT Sports caught the completely raw and natural emotions of Jenas, who definitely had no idea the cameras were even rolling.
Get this man a gig in Hollywood.
— Football on TNT Sports (@footballontnt) November 28, 2023
An eye for talent
Going back to Brighton vs Wolves at the beginning of 2024, Jenas was talking up Pedro Neto for an impressive performance despite the game ending a goalless draw.
He was keen to express on commentary how Neto had impressed him some years ago when he was breaking through at Lazio, having watched him closely.
Neto played 55 minutes in total while on the books at Lazio. Please stop lying, Jermaine.
Hosting the World Cup draw
This came weeks after also being the host for the 2022 FIFA The Best awards. Nobody still has any idea how he managed to get in with football’s top organisation.
Here we gooo! 🤩
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) April 1, 2022
Confused by the laws of the game
Back to Brighton vs Wolves, after commentary learned that Matheus Cunha had been booked for persistent infringement, Jenas lost his rag somewhat.
Going on a min-rant, he confessed he had no idea what the term ‘persistent infringement’ actually meant.
Insightful. You’re the ex-pro, Jermaine, not us.
2022 World Cup
As England blitzed Iran in the group stages of the 2022 World Cup, Jenas was at his very best.
Highlights included him being able to lipread what the Iranian medical staff were discussing with one another, telling us not to get carried away with England’s performance before going on to do exactly that himself, begging up how England made Iran look ordinary.
Iran, whose highest FIFA ranking ever was 15th and lowest was 122nd.
"England have made them look ordinary" – Jermaine Jenas' expert analysis of Iran. Yes, Iran. #Qatar2022
— Jim Doran (@jai_dee) November 21, 2022