A STUDENT has gone viral on social media with videos of his “scary accurate” impression of football pundit Gary Neville.
Sarib Khalil has gained massive attention online in recent weeks after a flurry of uploads to his TikTok account where he brings Neville to life with an eerily accurate Mancunian accent.
Sarib’s TikTok videos show him reenacting the Manchester United legend’s matchday commentary to his more than 15,000 followers.
Sarib from Newham, London has even been filmed impersonating Neville to his former teammate Rio Ferdinand, who was left in stitches over the accuracy.
The 21-year-old appeared on Sky Sports News’ ‘Good morning sports fans’ section last Friday (JAN 13) performing on live TV, but was met with a mixed reaction to his performance.
Sky Sports shared a snippet of his live impression in a post to Twitter on Friday (JAN 13) with the caption: “This you, @GNev2?
“Nobody wants to grow up and be a Gary Neville, unless you’re @saribk01 and his scary accurate impression of our pundit…”
The post has been viewed by over 1.6 million Twitter users and has received over 5,000 likes, but received a mixed reception in the comments.
One Twitter user wrote: “It’s almost perfect. He’s like 95% there, he just needs to throw in a bit more ‘at this moment in time’ and it will be spot on!”
Another wrote: “It’s like someone cloned @GNev2 but he came out young and attractive.”
A third joked: “The true test of a Gary Neville speak-alike is the Torres goal sound.”
However, one user said: “Bang average impression if you ask me. Why is this getting so much hype. #average”
A fifth added: “Tbf his social stuff is way better than this. If I turned this on not knowing what he was doing I would think he is just a lad from Manchester giving his point of view.”
Another wrote: “Something that if it was in the pub you’d say sounds a bit like him. But to put it on Sky Sports News is a bit much.”
Another user said: “Pretty awful let’s be honest, how’s this made TV?”
Speaking today (18 JAN) Sarib said: “Honestly, it’s been crazy the amount of attention it has been given, I never would’ve thought it would receive the attention it has.
“I started doing it just because I kind of had the notes for the voice and started doing it as a party trick for friends.
“I just copied him one day and my cousin said you sound just like him and I kind of took it from there.
“I didn’t really do much until about April 2022 where I was pushed to post to Tiktok and it blew up from there.
“My recent blows up were actually a fan account on Twitter who posted my video from TikTok and it did well on his Twitter.
“I thought that if my content is doing well on his account, surely I can push my own stuff to Twitter, which I did. The rest is history.
“Obviously reactions have been largely good but my Sky Sports cameo had its critics – rightfully so as I was so nervous and I could’ve done a lot better but I guess it comes with it.
“I’m just taking every opportunity as it comes.
“I wanted to get into teaching but I have always been passionate about acting or presenting. Any opportunities I would be more than willing to take.
“I kind of want to move away from the impression and do that. I’m studying sports and exercise science as I wanted to teach and was always passionate about sport.
“Appearing on Sky Sports was honestly so shocking in a good way. It was such a great experience with so many great people.”