Channel 9 Axes The Footy Show After 26 Years On The Air
After more than a quarter of a century on the nation's televisions, Channel 9 has made the difficult decision to axe The Footy Show.
The legendary AFL show had been facing horrific ratings and network bosses had no other choice but to dump it altogether.
Melbourne managing director Matt Scriven said: "It has been a tough decision to end the program that has been such a trailblazer, but sadly the new show has not captured audiences in the way we had hoped.
I'm bloody disappointed The Footy Show has been cancelled but I'm grateful for the opportunity to host it with Nez, Fev, Dylan and Crawf and am really proud of the shows we made. Our team were brilliant and spare a thought for the crew, some of whom had been there for 25 years!- lehmo (@lehmo23) May 9, 2019
"I want to thank the current hosts, Anthony Lehmann, Neroli Meadows, Dylan Alcott, Brendan Fevola and Shane Crawford, the former hosts of The Footy Show, and the hard working crew for their great contribution."
It has been the country's longest running sports show so the decision is particularly brutal because of how embedded it is in the TV culture.
But it's hard to argue with declining ratings, which the show had its fair share of in its latest season.
Last week, according to the Daily Telegraph, the show attracted a measly 53,000 viewers - which is the lowest number the programme has ever received.
But the Herald Sun says the cast and crew had no prior warning that the show was going to be axed, with the announcement coming an hour after the episode aired.
Former Footy Show host Garry Lyon told SEN Breakfast: "That is an execution. The Footy Show went to air last night, Neroli [Meadows] farewelled and said, 'Thanks for watching, see you next week'.
"Then an hour later, out comes the press release, bang, The Footy Show's gone. They should have said, 'Listen, we're no longer, but next we'll farewell The Footy Show."
But there's no one who's more upset than Eddie McGuire who was there from the show's start.
Speaking on Triple M, the Collingwood president said: "I'm sad because it's the end of a run for a great show.
"It's gone for 26 years, when we first started the show we were told we had six weeks to make it rate and here we are 26 years later and we got 729 more episodes out of it than anybody thought.
"It's been a huge success. It's transformed football, certainly the entertainment and the commercialisation of the game. So we're hugely proud of that."
Some people are calling for Channel 9 to allow the show to have one more episode to allow the cast, crew and fans to say goodbye.
Featured Image Credit: Channel 9