As the new Premier League season draws ever closer, competing parties are wrangling over how fans will get to watch matches.
With hundreds of thousands of fans that would usually be at live football matches each week currently unable to attend, is the current TV rights package sufficient?
The Football Supporters’ Association says not, and is begging the powers that be to give fans a legitimate way to watch their teams, rather than forcing them to turn to illegal streaming.
In the post-lockdown league completion earlier this summer, TV rights were varied substantially to allow all matches to be broadcast across four different platforms: Sky Sports, BT Sport, the BBC, and Amazon Prime. Fans are desperate for this to happen again, as subscribing to the three non-free-to-air options would cost about £100/month, and would only give access to a small selection of games.
The argument against televising all games was, historically, that it would impact the number of fans attending live games. While that is not possible, it does not make sense for fans in China or the US to be able to watch all matches (which they can legally), while fans in the UK are restricted to just a handful.
We will wait to see whether a new deal is struck.
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