Lance Armstrong interview by Oprah Winfrey will be stage-managed - David Millar

Last Updated: 10/01/13 7:54pm

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David Millar: Fears the Oprah interview will be toothless

David Millar: Fears the Oprah interview will be toothless

Sky Bet

David Millar fears Lance Armstrong's appearance on Oprah Winfrey's show next week will be "completely stage-managed" and will fail to fully address the disgraced cyclist's doping past.

The 41-year-old American will be formally interviewed for the first time on the Oprah show next Friday morning since revelations of long-term doping during his career broke last October.

A statement from the programme's producers said Armstrong "will address the alleged doping scandal, years of accusations of cheating, and charges of lying about the use of performance-enhancing drugs throughout his storied cycling career".

However, Millar is among the many sceptics who feel talk-show host Winfrey is not a suitable interviewer and that Armstrong should instead be quizzed in a more official setting.

He said: "It is not sitting in front of a judge or a disciplinary hearing being properly questioned about the things he has done wrong. I doubt very much it will be a proper interrogation.

"My biggest concern is that it will be completely stage-managed, that he will just be 'given the ball', and that it will all be about his emotions rather that concentrating on exactly what he did wrong."

Millar also questioned whether Armstrong was set to benefit financially from the interview, but despite requests, producers are yet to reveal whether that is the case.

Millar, a member of the athletes commission for the World Anti-Doping Agency, added: "The question should also be asked whether he is getting paid for going on the show."

Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles, banned for life and had his entire professional record from August 1998 onwards expunged after the International Cycling Union ratified a United States Anti-Doping Agency report that concluded the Texan had been behind a systematic doping programme between 1999 and 2005.

On Saturday, the New York Times reported that Armstrong was considering confessing to using performance-enhancing drugs during his career in order to have his ban reduced and eligibility to take part in triathlons and running races restored.

The Oprah interview, which will also be streamed worldwide online, will be shown at 2am GMT on Friday, January 18.

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