Australia's Channel Seven Sunrise host David Koch made viewers angry after he appeared to make a joke about slavery during a segment about athlete Usain Bolt.

The on-air faux pas happened after co-host Mark Beretta read a story about the Jamaican-born Olympic legend, alongside Sam Armytage and Natalie Barr.

Speaking about Bolt possibly leaving the Central Coast Mariners Football Club, Koch began: "So the Mariners sell him for money, they make a lot of money out of it?" he asked.

Beretta replied:

It's a win-win: You keep him, great. You sell him, so be it. That's the tough world of professional football.

And then Koch dropped the following bomb:

Who said slavery was over - anyway. No.

He seemed to have caught on that what he said was highly inappropriate, and changed the subject - but not before viewers heard what he said.

Barr and the other co-hosts looked stunned.

Viewers are angry...

Other people argued that the entire segment was just wrong.

In response to mounting criticism, Koch attempted to defend his use of the word "slavery":

"We were talking about how good it is for Bolt and the Mariners at news he was getting offers from European clubs. Basically, the use of the word slavery is a reference I've used to defend players who want to trade clubs or change jobs in sport."

...but people are not impressed by his botched attempt at an apology.

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