Match of the Day host Gary Lineker asked Hansen for his thoughts about racism in British football following the news that England captain John Terry is to be charged with using racist language.
Hansen said: "I think it's better, not only with the players but with the supporters. I think there's a lot of coloured players in all the teams, all the major teams, and there's a lot of coloured players that are probably the best in the Premier League.
"And, as I say, if you look 25, 30 years ago, it was probably in a bad way, not as bad as some of the nations in the Continent, but certainly there's always, always room for improvement."
Viewers immediately complained on Twitter about Hansen's controversial terminology and the former Liverpool footballer this morning (December 22) gave a statement on the matter.
"I unreservedly apologise for any offence caused. This was never my intention and I deeply regret the use of the word," he said.
> Alan Hansen earns £40k for each 'Match of the Day'
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