Eddie McGuire to come back as Footy Show co-host
EDDIE McGuire will return to The Footy Show as co-host alongside Sam Newman and Rebecca Maddern.
The addition of the Collingwood president will see current co-host Craig Hutchison leave the show, according to the Herald Sun.
Hutchison only joined the show this year following the recent departures of Garry Lyon and James Brayshaw. He previously hosted the Sunday Footy Show.
Channel Nine is expected to make an announcement on the move later today.
Since Channel Seven moved its AFL program The Front Bar to air at the same time as The Footy Show (8.30pm Thursdays in Victoria), The Front Bar has won the ratings battle in three out of four weeks.
McGuire hosts Triple M Melbourne's breakfast radio program The Hot Breakfast with Aussie comedian Mick Molloy, and the pair will become direct competitors next year because Molloy is also a panellist on The Front Bar.
Earlier on Friday entertainment reporter Peter Ford told 3AW radio McGuire was negotiating with Foxtel, where he presents some of Fox Footy's AFL coverage, to allow him to return to Channel Nine.
"There's a lot of buzz around that Eddie has been in discussions with Foxtel about releasing him from his contractual obligations to allow him to become involved with The Footy Show again, not just as the host, but with his production company producing the show," Ford said.
Ford later tweeted both parties were happy with the deal that had been done.
It's funny, it may not be the ratings blockbuster it used to be, but it (The Footy Show) can still whip Melbourne into a frenzy," Ford told 3AW after news of McGuire's return went public.
"The Footy Show is pretty much a shadow of its former self. This is the only option. It's a good throw of the dice."