Garry Lyon and best friend Bill Brownless in feud that is threatening AFL Footy Show line-up
February 12, 2016 10:00pm
EXCLUSIVE: A feud between Garry Lyon and best friend Bill Brownless has threatened to disrupt the make-up of The Footy Show this year.
The Herald Sun understands the two have fallen out over a deeply private matter which has affected both Lyon and Brownless personally.
Brownless is said to be devastated by the turn of events and has conceded to friends that his mateship with Lyon is virtually over.
It’s believed Lyon, who is said to be under incredible stress because of the situation, hasn’t yet committed to the season-opening show, expected to be on March 23, the day before the AFL season kicks off at the MCG.
The probability of Brownless and Lyon working together this year remains remote.
The feud has put The Footy Show’s line up at risk.
Both Lyon and Brownless, who were contemporaries on the field and have worked together on The Footy Show for at least 15 years, did not return calls from Herald Sun last night.
A senior Channel Nine executive also did not return calls yesterday.
It’s understood people at Channel Nine are aware of the details of why the friendship took a sudden nosedive.
Lyon and Brownless underpin Channel Nine’s flagship sports show, with their blokey humour and close relationship a winner with viewers.
Lyon’s camaraderie with Sam Newman is also a reason why the show has been a TV phenomenon.
Brownless and Lyon are also key on-air talent at radio station Triple M, although the pair are not on the air together.
Billy Brownless is said to have conceded to close friends his friendship with Lyon is virtually over.
Lyon is the face of the station’s game coverage on Friday night and Saturday, while Brownless does a weekday program with James Brayshaw, who is also the co-host of The Footy Show.
Sources told the Herald Sun yesterday Brownless was unaware if he was appearing on the The Footy Show this year.
Lyon’s position will be determined over the coming weeks.
A TV institution, The Footy Show and Brownless came under fire late last year when he called a mother and daughter “strippers” at a junior football function.
AFL chief Gillon McLachlan spoke to Channel Nine managing director Ian Paterson about the sexist gaffes.
It was a difficult year for the ever-popular Brownless.
In July, he spoke of the pain caused by the split with Nicki.
“I didn’t see it coming, so that hurt,” Brownless said.
“And I took a while to get over it. But you’ve got to get back up because that’s what I do, you’ve got to be up and bubbly. We all get down but it’s about getting back on the bike.”