Gary Lineker has responded after Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema accused the Match of the Day presenter of "spreading hatred".
The French forward's comments were in relation to a claim from Lineker questioning the striker's reputation.
After a 1-1 draw in the Champions League between Real Madrid and Tottenham last month, in which Benzema missed a glaring opportunity, Lineker tweeted: “Is it me or is Benzema a tad overrated? A goal every other game in a team as strong as Real Madrid is nada especial. Decent not great.”
Is it me or is Benzema a tad overrated? A goal every other game in a team as strong as Real Madrid is nada especial. Decent not great.— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) October 17, 2017
The opinion was noted by Los Blancos coach Zinedine Zidane, who said: "For people who know about football to say this is embarrassing, but for me he is the best of them all, by a long way.
"Karim will not score 60, but he will score 25, 30 and set up 30 or 40. So I get annoyed when people talk about my players, although we cannot avoid it."
Benzema himself did not take kindly to Lineker's assessment, publicly calling out the former England international.
“The criticism from ex-footballers who become journalists, some of who only share their hate, I feel sorry for them, frankly,” Benzema told Les Inrockuptibles, quoted by Teamtalk.
“They have experienced the same situations but don’t have solidarity.”
Lineker again took to Twitter to reply, writing: "Asking questions about football is my job and it’s certainly not ‘spreading hatred’. Is it me or is @Benzema a tad over-sensitive?"