Eddie responds to Footy Show ‘bombshell’
THE Footy Show is already being rebuilt to make a comeback in 2019, according to a report from Essendon legend Tim Watson.
The Channel 7 sport presenter and SEN Breakfast host said on Wednesday morning that he had been informed the controversial, iconic panel show would be returning this footy season and fronted by Eddie McGuire and shock jock Sam Newman.
The AFL Footy Show was axed earlier this month, following the lead of the NRL Footy Show, on the back of a record ratings slump.
The revamped panel of Anthony "Lehmmo" Lehmann, Neroli Meadows and Dylan Alcott weren't able to save the dated format - but Nine appears to have belief that McGuire and Newman can return the show to its former glory.
"Take this to the bank, The Footy Show will be reformed in some guise," Watson told SEN Breakfast.
"There will be a grand final show again this year.
"Not a big Rod Laver Arena show, but a big Grand Final Footy Show. Eddie McGuire and Sam Newman locked in to co-host the show."
McGuire responded to the report on his own Melbourne radio show on Wednesday morning, declaring he had "no announcement" to make at the moment.
"I've said in the past and we said when the show finished up that we'd be looking at different things at Channel 9, and we continue to look at things," McGuire told Triple M's Hot Breakfast.
"There's been no decisions on this. Is it something that's been contemplated? Yeah."
He said it "makes sense" that Newman and other Footy Show stars would get one final chance to say farewell.
"I'm being absolutely honest with you here, of course things have been discussed, late last year even, on what we would do with The Footy Show " he said.
"You know that this show was put together with about a week's head start. It was a late call to look at a different demographic. Just to do something a bit different. (We) decided not to go on with it."
It remains unclear if any of the show's 2019 panel will be joining in on the band getting back together - especially after the brutal fashion in which the crew and stars found out about the show's unceremonious axing.
Speaking with Melbourne legend, former Footy Show host and SEN Breakfast colleague Garry Lyon, Watson said former stars of the show would be contacted to make a blockbuster return for the one-off special in grand final week.
Lyon, however, said he had not been contacted and didn't believe he would be able to return to Nine because of his ongoing commitments with Fox Footy.
"I am thinking at some point in time - and you may not want to confirm this right here, right now - but I am thinking that your management will be contacted at some point," Watson said to Lyon.
"You will be asked the question, 'Garry, will you participate in the grand final show?'"
Lyon responded: "I won't be asked... and with Ed there, that's the end of the story."
Watson, speculated the premise for the return of the show would be uniting all the former stars of the show back together again.
"I don't know this to be fact or not, but they may try and get the band back together again," he said.
"The whole old band back together again."
The staff of the 2019 re-vamp were not even told of the show's ugly demise, so early in the footy season, until after the final episode went to air.
It ended with Meadows' immortal sign-off "see you next week".
They found out just minutes later that the show had been cancelled.
The Nine Network pulled the plug after it had plummeted to an all-time ratings low of 53,000 viewers in Melbourne the previous week.
Alcott has confirmed the crew and on-camera stars were told the show had been terminated just minutes after the final episode.
"Yeah, we got axed, it's done, we're gone," Alcott said on the Hit Network's Weekends with Tanya, Angus and Dylan.
"It's the first time I've been sacked from something. It was a funny feeling for me when they pull you in and tell you something like that.
"I was getting make-up and I saw the suits there, the execs, and I thought, 'Ooh, we're in trouble here.'"
McGuire's media company JAM TV produced the show for Nine. It first aired in 1994.