Jeff Stelling quits Countdown

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Jeff Stelling

Jeff Stelling

Jeff Stelling is leaving 'Countdown' after three years to focus on his work for Sky Sports.

Jeff Stelling has quit 'Countdown'.

The popular presenter is stepping down from his role on the long-running Channel 4 daytime contest - which he joined in January 2009 - in order to focus on his work with Sky Sports.

He told Oasis FM: "Next season I'm doing Champions League for Sky, so I've resigned from Countdown.

"You've really got to have your priorities and mine is football."

Jeff admitted he will be sad not to be working with maths whiz Rachel Riley, who joined the programme at the same time, but knows he had to do what was best for himself.

He added: "That'll be really sad. She's a great girl. I'll miss her but I just felt I had to really try to focus on the things that I love."

Channel 4 confirmed Jeff will leave at the end of the year, adding they have already begun looking for a replacement.

They said: "Jeff's had a brilliant three years and we're sad to see him go. We're already talking to a number of people to find a replacement."

Comedian Alexander Armstrong is tipped to take over, with Bradley Walsh and Christopher Biggins also said to be in consideration for the role.

Jeff was the fourth person to present 'Countdown'.

Richard Whiteley fronted the show from its inception in 1982 until his death in 2005. Des Lynam then took over, but was replaced by Des O'Connor after less than a year.

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