Nine axes The Footy Show after 25 years

Nine is axing its NRL Footy Show after 25 years.

The show, which is most popular in Sydney and Brisbane, will not return next year, as Nine is ‘revolutionising’ its coverage of the game, it said today.

The show has been running for 25 years

At its peak, Nine’s NRL Footy Show pulled audience numbers as high as 370,000, but in recent years, those numbers have fallen below the 100,000 viewer mark.

Last Thursday, the show attracted audiences of 78,000 and 51,000 in Sydney and Brisbane respectively.

Nine’s decision to axe the show comes a year after the show sacked host Paul ‘Fatty’ Vautin after 24 years, replacing him with Nine presenter Erin Molan. Shortly afterwards, NRL Footy Show panellist Darryl Brohman revealed his contract had not been renewed. This year, The Footy Show has been hosted by Molan, Ryan Girdler and Andrew Johns, as well as with contributors Beau Ryan and Brohman.

At the time, Nine said the show would have a new “format, look and feel”, following its deal with the NRL for digital rights. 

Today, Nine’s Wide World of Sports said it would launch a “new look’, feel and sound” to NRL in 2019, with two new post-match shows to follow the Thursday night and Friday night matches. The shows will have a “strong emphasis of being at the ground, and interacting with players, fans and coaches”.

Tom Malone, Nine’s director of sport, said it had been an “incredible ride” for the show.

“A quarter of a century of laughs, controversy and first-class footy analysis. I want to thank everyone who has contributed to this amazing era of live sports-entertainment television – from producers, editors, camera operators, the players, guests and of course the legendary hosts,” Malone said.

“Fatty holds the record for the longest serving host of any prime time Australian TV show – a tribute to both his understanding of the game, his authenticity, and not to mention his incredible comedic timing. In recent years, Erin has equally brought a new energy, perspective and showed her passion for the game.”

Malone said Molan would be taking on a “more prominent role” in Nine’s sports broadcasts moving forward, across various sports including netball, tennis and cricket as well as NRL.

In a post on Instagram, Molan described her time with the show as an “incredible privilege”.

No mention has been made of Nine’s AFL Footy Show, despite the departure of veteran commentator Sam Newman several weeks ago. Last year, Eddie McGuire returned to the AFL Footy Show to work alongside Newman and Rebecca Maddern.


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