Gary Lineker, Zinedine Zidane and Karim Benzema have been the source of an unusually popular 'spat' in this past week.
With the BBC and BT pundit publicly questioning the exalted status afforded to the Real Madrid forward, Benzema's manager Zidane was quick to claim Lineker's doubts were 'embarrassing.'
Well, while most of us would have probably been content to leave this story at that, the Spanish newspaper Marca have decided that justice has not yet been served.
Assessing Lineker's achievements as a footballer, they summed up the former Barcelona forward's career as follows:
How good was Lineker? Four vs Spain, hat-trick vs Real Madrid ... and little else.
A glorified extension of Real's marketing department, it is difficult to ascertain the sincerity of their attempts to discredit the golden-boot winner of the 1986 World Cup.
Probing Lineker's doubts whether Benzema's 'goal every other game' ratio for Real is sufficient given the support he is provided with, Joel del Río proceeds to assess Lineker's scoring exploits:
The ex-striker scored 281 goals in 567 matches throughout his professional career.
He also netted 48 goals for England in 80 international matches; an average of 0.49 goals per game.
Just shy of the .50 goals per game that Lineker accused Benzema of demonstrating it would appear.
However, the most striking element of this critique was yet to come. According to del Rió, Lineker, the old First Division's top scorer on 3 occassions, lacked 'the killer instinct within the [penalty] area that he is now shaming Benzema for.'
To grant this lunacy some sort of clarity, it is worth investigating the nature of those 48 goals he scored for England.
Clocked up in just 8 years, it took Bobby Charlton 13 years to get his 49 international goals; Wayne Rooney had 14 years to hit the 53 mark.
Playing a relative 26 and 39 games less than both men, Lineker, beyond anything else, had the killer instinct - albeit, maybe del Rió was simply making a point about Lineker's unblemished disciplinary record?
Under the sub-heading, 'The day Lineker could've changed history', del Rió comes into his own however.
Recalling the 1986 World Cup quarter final, when Maradona rightfully 'scored the goal of the century' and another goal del Rió feels no need to mention, it was Lineker who is seemingly remembered as the man who spoiled England's chances of progression.