He may be licking his wounds after his Top Gear exit, but Chris Evans is full of praise for his former co-host Matt LeBlanc.

In his new Mail on Sunday column, the BBC Radio 2 DJ admitted that he was a "square peg in a round hole" on the hugely popular motoring show, and gave the former Friends star a massive thumbs-up.

"For me, [Matt] is the man. He is the captain Top Gear truly needs going forward, the perfect torso for the rest of TG's limbs," he wrote.

"Not only does he eat, sleep, breathe and dream engines, propshafts and trail-braking, but the overwhelming quality that struck me about him is that he's just such a pro . . . The simple truth is he and Top Gear were made for each other."

Evans added that he was "entirely sad Top Gear didn't work out" for him and called the opportunity to present the show "a complete honour, privilege and a pleasure", adding: "I think the phrase is 'not meant to be'."

He also wrote: "I would have loved to have carried on working on it, but letting go with a smile on your face is far better than clinging on till you look constipated. Know what I mean?"

Last week, the BBC confirmed that Evans would not be replaced on Top Gear. It hasn't been announced which of the remaining hosts will return next time around, although LeBlanc is rumoured to be negotiating a new deal for the show.