finally signed up for – six years after he turned down an offer in case it hurt his chances as a football coach.
The 55-year-old retired legend snubbed an offer from the BBC back in 2016 as producers tried to land him for , but the timing just wasn’t right.
He told the Daily Mirror: ‘I still wanted to be a coach, which remains for me the best part of the football business.
‘One of the main reasons I turned down chances to go on Strictly Come Dancing – despite the money on offer being good – was because I was concerned about not being taken seriously as a football coach after it.’
However, the– who had enjoyed managerial spells with Wycombe Wanderers, Feyenoord, Portsmouth and Gabala by that point, before having a short spell at Granada in 2017 – couldn’t resist ‘sequins’ and ‘salsa’.
‘To say I’m excited is an understatement,’ he previously said in a statement. ‘The lure of the sequins and the call of the salsa has me swapping my battered old football boots for Strictly soft shoes.’
It doesn’t sound like the defender has confidence in his footwork though, and he suggested his dance partner could have their work cut out as he joked: ‘I can’t wait to meet my partner. God help her!’
Tony won 66 caps for England, appeared at four major tournaments and had 10 major trophy wins whilst is still the only player in English football history to captain a team to three top flight titles over three different decades.
As captain of England, he famously led the national team to the Euro 96 final.
On Strictly, he’ll be competing with the likes of X Factor star Fleur East, TV presenter Helen Skelton, singer Matt Goss and EastEnders actor James Bye.
It remains to be seen if Tony can add another trophy to his packed cabinet…
Strictly Come Dancing returns to BBC on Saturday, September 17.
Do you find OkayWap useful? Click here to give us five stars rating!