Last week it was the Mirror getting the wrong end of the stick to beat Gordon Ramsay. This weekend, the Sunday Express reckoned it was the end of the line for Gary Lineker.

Readers of the tabloid were shocked to read that the football pundit and long-time Walkers salesman had apparently been dropped by the crisp brand. Also shocked were the great man’s agent, Walkers owner PepsiCo and Lineker himself – for he will continue to mix crisp ads with Match of the Day duties for the foreseeable future.

He will, as revealed in Saturday’s edition of The Grocer, be a little less prominent in the latest ad, which focuses on the ‘Three Simple Things’ that Walkers says go into its crisps. But Lineker does feature in the advert and has not been dropped by the brand.

“There is no change whatsoever to Gary Lineker’s role or relationship with Walkers,” a spokesman for PepsiCo said today.

“He plays a crucial role in our Three Simple Things ad campaign, to be released in September, and we can assure you will continue to make people smile at his love for the nation’s favourite crisps for years to come.”

The story has since been pulled from the Express website.