“I can’t watch that shit anymore,” the Leverkusen sporting director told the Hamburger Morgenpost newspaper on Sunday. “It’s a Muppet Show.”
Völler was specifically talking about Sky Sport’s experts Markus Merk, Steffen Freund and Jan Age Fjörtoft, who delivered a stinging verdict on Leverkusen’s desultory performance in their 2:0 defeat to Schalke at the weekend.
Völler, who epitomized the perm-plus-moustache look favoured by 1980’s German footballers, has a belligerent reputation. He was famously involved in an altercation at the 1990 World Cup with Dutch player Frank Rijkaard, who spat in his mullet.
The former World Champion was particularly unimpressed with Merk, who used to be one of Germany’s top referees. He said that Leverkusen midfielder Simon Rolfes should have been sent off for an elbow challenge.
“What Merk comes out with is unbelievable,” said Völler. “He’s constantly stabbing his former colleagues in the back.”
But the Sky pundits were not to be outdone in the war of words. Merk countered by describing the Leverkusen top dog as a “verbal arsonist.”
“I won’t accept that,” the former ref said of Völler’s attack. “He should worry about his show at Leverkusen. He’s got enough to do there.”
Ex-Frankfurt player Fjörtoft was even more robust, dismissing Völler as an “überclown.”
“He’s always trying to copy [comedian and Sky football presenter Oliver] Pocher,” raged back Völler. “But that’s an insult to a real comedian like Pocher. Fjörtoft should stay at home.”