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Man Utd coach Neville admits punditry criticism was tough

Manchester United coach Phil Neville admits early criticism of his World Cup punditry did hurt.

Neville wrote in his column for BBC Sport: "I had done lots of practising off-screen over the previous two months; unfortunately it just did not go as well on the night as I thought it would.

"It was straight after the game that I found out the reaction to it all. I went on social media and it was pretty brutal.

"I understand why - it was an England game, late on a Saturday night back home, and emotions were running high. And, doing that job, I am there to be shot at.

"As a co-commentator, 60% of your job is to get your content right, to see what is happening in the game and the little patterns that are developing. To spot things and give them to the people watching at home.

"And the other 40% is in your delivery, which is something I have obviously learned the hard way.

"The content of what I was saying was fine, it was just the tone of my voice that was the problem.

"I played it back the next day and it did not sound like it was me commentating. I was trying to be somebody I wasn't, and I knew I could do better than that.

"I got vilified for it, but I got nothing but total backing and support from the BBC.

"Again, it was a bit like being a player again. If I had a bad game I would get criticised but, as long as my manager was on my side, that was what mattered."

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