DAN WALKER has spoken out about Football Focus amid concerns over the future of the show.
Walker was host of the BBC programme for 12 years, but was replaced with Alex Scott in 2021.
There have been reports that the popular show could face the axe after a dramatic drop in viewing figures, but the BBC have denied that the fan favourite is at risk of coming to an end.
And Walker has taken to his Instagram to send a heartfelt message about his hopes that it stays alive.
He wrote: "It's hard to see Football Focus struggling. I loved it growing up and it was an honour to present it and I still miss it.
"We poured everything into that show each week and worked hard to keep it relevant. I hope it stays part of the TV landscape."
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The iconic programme has been on air since 1974, but has seen it's early-season audience tank by over a third in the last four years.
The average weekly viewing figures for August fell from 849,000 in 2019 to 809,000 in 2020, 599,000 in 2022 and then just 564,000 last month.
Although Football Focus isn't understood to be under immediate threat, the Daily Mail have said that the long-term future has been put into doubt.
However, the BBC have denied that there is any ongoing issues and claim there is no threat to the beloved show's future.
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A spokesperson said: "Football Focus continues to herald the start of a whole weekend packed full of sporting coverage for fans across BBC Sport, including radio, our website and Player.
"Week-on-week it is the most watched programme during that time slot and iPlayer viewing figures are also strong, so we know its popularity is enduring for fans, wherever they choose to watch."
Walker's emotional message echoes the sentiment by many football fans who have been watching Football Focus for the last 49 years.
The journalist and presenter recently left the BBC for good in a switch to Channel 5, but has said he has no regrets about ditching his former employer.
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