Richard Madeley jokes Piers Morgan is ‘the master’ of GMB after ratings slump

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Richard Madeley has joked Piers Morgan is ‘the master’ of Good Morning Britain after the ITV show hit a ratings low.

Richard is currently taking the place of Piers on GMB after the controversial host dramatically quit the show back in March, but during a segment on Friday morning, Richard admitted that Piers ‘hadn’t quite left the building’ in terms of the series’ success.

Ahead of the National Television Awards, GMB aired a highlight reel celebrating its previous year – and it heavily featured Piers, who was seen laughing with Dr Hilary Jones over his ‘intimate piercings’, and Britain’s oldest twins, Lilian Cox and Doris Hobday.

At the end of the clip, Richard joked: “Well, it just goes to show that Piers hasn’t quite left the building.

“There are still shades and shadows of The Master still with us.”

GMB viewership has tanked since Piers left the show – days after he walked off set over a row about Meghan Markle’s interview with Oprah Winfrey.

He declared he ‘didn’t believe a word’ Meghan said during the interview – including claims she felt suicidal because of the pressure of being in the public eye, and allegations that a senior member of the Royal family ‘expressed concern’ about baby Archie’s skin colour while she was pregnant.

On Tuesday, it was revealed only 450,000 were recorded tuning into Monday’s episode, compared to a 1.9million viewership peak at its height in March.

The series averaged at 1.1million.

The episode was one of the lowest figures in the show’s seven-year history.

Since Piers’s exit, Susanna Reid has been joined by a rotating cast of co-stars, including Bill Turnbull, Adil Ray and Ben Shephard.

Richard Madeley joined the show at the beginning of June, having previously agreed to step in for Piers during a planned two-month break over March and April, before his exit.

“I was due to come back in April and May because Piers was going to America,” Richard revealed to Charlotte Hawkins.

“So I would’ve been sitting alongside you quite a lot then, but all that went west. So here I am.”

A permanent replacement for Piers is yet to be confirmed, however Madeley had previously said he would be happy to become a long-term fixture.

“The bookies have me down as the front-runner and there have been opinion polls where I’ve come out reasonably well, but there’s a huge difference between that and it being a reality,” he told The Sun.

“I’ll go in, I’ll fill in, I’ll enjoy it and I hope they ask me back. But in terms of sitting in for Piers, it’s a completely open question.”

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays from 6am on ITV.

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