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Barnt Green resident Ron Atkinson enters reality show
FORMER football manager and pundit Ron Atkinson has made a surprise return to television screens after signing up for Celebrity Big Brother.
The Barnt Green resident, better known as Big Ron, was one of 13 contestants that entered the latest series of the Channel 5 reality show last night, (August 22).
Mr Atkinson managed Aston Villa and West Bromwich Albion before become a successful television pundit.
But in 2004 his career was left in tatters after making a racist comment about the black Chelsea defender Marcel Desailly.
The 74-year-old believed his microphone was off but the comments were broadcast in several parts of the world, which led to him resigning from ITV and being sacked by the Guardian newspaper, for which he wrote a column.
At the height of the affair, in an exclusive interview with the Advertiser, Mr Atkinson described it as an expensive mistake to make, saying he wanted to draw a line under it and move on.
However the damage to his career has resulted in only occasional media appearances in the years since, including 2009’s Celebrity Wife Swap.
On entering the house, Mr Atkinson told host Emma Willis he would be going into the unknown.
Mr Atkinson, who told show producers he had only ever seen 10 minutes of the reality programme, is reportedly being paid a fee of more than £100,000 for his appearance.
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