He’s back! Karl Stefanovic to return to Today
TV host Karl Stefanovic will wake up with Today in 2020-alongside Allison Langdon.
Nine newspapers confirmed Stefanovic is heading back to the ailing Channel 9 breakfast show, with Georgie Gardner set to depart and Weekend Today host Alli Langdon to co-host.
It's been less than a year since the network unceremoniously dumped Stefanovic while he was on his honeymoon.
The decision sidelines the current team of Gardner, Deb Knight and Tom Steinfort for Stefanovic.
Nine had been under growing pressure, with Today hitting record low ratings. It registered its lowest weekly average of 174,000 this month, forcing executives to finally take action. While some reports this week suggested Stefanovic will take a cut on his rumoured $2 million-plus salary, The Telegraph understands this is not the case. Instead, it is believed Stefanovic and his management negotiated a deal to retain his salary - on the basis he lifts the disastrous ratings.
"It is crunch time," a well-placed TV executive said. "It just had to be done. Today is bleeding ratings and, worst still, the show is bleeding revenue." Nine would not comment yesterday.
But viewers appear set to welcome Stefanovic back, with a Telegraph survey of almost 1400 readers revealing 62 per cent want the Gold Logie-winner to return to the breakfast show.
Elsewhere at Nine, Today Extra host Sonia Kruger is understood to be jumping ship to Channel 7 in 2020.