TV & radio host Eddie McGuire has copped it on social media for defending a 1999 stunt by ex-Footy Show co-host Sam Newman.

McGuire, who hosted The Footy Show alongside Newman from 1994 until 2005, was interviewed for a documentary examining racism in Australian sport called The Australian Dream.

Since the documentary’s airing on the ABC last night, both McGuire and Newman have faced heavy backlash on social media, with many taking aim at McGuire’s perceived defence of Newman appearing on The Footy Show in blackface.

The stunt followed St Kilda player Nicky Winmar cancelling his planned appearance on the program.

“He didn’t understand the nuance, he was a product of those times” McGuire said of his former co-host.

“He was a 60s, 70s vaudevillian who was sending up Nicky Winmar because he didn’t turn up on the show that night”, continued McGuire on the documentary.

Viewers watching took to Twitter to take aim at the media personality, with one user labelling McGuire “vile” while another describing him as a “used car salesman”.

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The Australian Dream premiered in cinemas around Australia last year, but was shown on free-to-air television for the first time last night.