Michael Strahan to leave 'Live with Kelly,' join 'GMA'

Michael Strahan will leave "Live with Kelly and Michael" to join "Good Morning America" full time, ABC confirmed Tuesday.

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The 44-year-old football player turned talk show host will complete the morning show team in September. 

"My time with 'Live with Kelly and Michael' has been transformative, and my departure will be bittersweet," he said. "Kelly has been an unbelievable partner, and I am so thankful to her and the entire team. I am extremely grateful for the amazing support I've received from all of the fans." 

Strahan joined Kelly Ripa on "Live with Kelly" in 2012, after producers searched for 10 months to find someone to replace Regis Philbin. Ripa and Strahan won an Emmy last year for outstanding entertainment talk show hosts. He began appearing as a special correspondent on GMA twice a week in 2014. 

"I look forward to continuing to work with the incredible team at GMA," Strahan, 44, said in a statement to "Us Weekly" magazine. "It is an exciting opportunity to be able to bring unique stories and voices to the audience." 

The move may be part of a larger action for GMA to better compete in viewership and ratings against NBC's "The Today Show."

"Michael has been a stellar addition to the broadcast," said ABC News president James Goldston. "Over the past two years on GMA, he’s proven to be a tireless and versatile broadcaster with an incredible ability to connect with people, from veterans to American pop culture icons and newsmakers. He will end a four-year run as Kelly Ripa’s co-host on 'Live!,' where he has honed his skills as an interviewer with genuine warmth and a quick wit. At 'GMA,' he’ll now have even more opportunities to tell stories that inspire, inform and empower people."

Strahan will continue to co-host "NFL on Fox" on the weekends.

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