Premier League to charge for watching certain matches

The Premier League scored a PR on goal today with the announcement that they are to charge £14.95 for fans to watch some of the next batch of games.


Premier League To Charge £14.95 For Games

Yes, in a world that notoriously moves slowly, it was announced today (Friday 9th October), that from Saturday 17th October, fans will now be expected to pay £14.95 to watch the matches not scheduled to be on live TV.

Every weekend 5 matches in the Premier League are scheduled to be on TV. These matches have their own time slots, such as the regular 12.30pm Saturday match on BT Sports, etc.

The remaining five matches are only covered live due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. And it's for these matches, that fans will now have to pay to watch.

Regular Premier League Match Time Slots

The matches scheduled to be live on TV are in the following time slots.....

  • 12.30pm Saturday BT Sports
  • 5.30pm Saturday - Sky Sports
  • 2pm Sunday - Sky Sports
  • 4.30pm Sunday - Sky Sports
  • 8pm Monday - Sky Sports

Non Scheduled Time Slots For Premier League Matches On TV

Games not scheduled to be on live TV are slots such as 3pm on Saturday.

And it's for these matches that fans will now be expected to fork out £14.95 to watch on a pay-per-view platform.

The time slots are......

  • 8pm Friday
  • 3pm Saturday
  • 8pm Saturday
  • 12pm Sunday
  • 7.15pm Sunday
  • 5.30pm Monday

The two pay-per-view channels covering the next batch of fixtures are BT Sports Box Office, and Sky Sports Box Office.

The fixtures runs from Saturday 17th October, to Monday 2nd November.

Fans will now have to pay £14.95 to see some Premier League games

Quick to Condemn

Fans groups, pundits, and ex-players have all been queuing up to give the Premier League a good kicking.

Former Man Utd defender, Gary Neville of Sky Sports - one of the pay-per-view platforms, condemned the move on Twitter. I'm not sure what his Sky bosses will make of that.

Like him, or loathe him, Neville is clearly his own man, with his own point of view.

Fans group, the Football Supporters' Association (FSA) also were critical of the move. They issued a statement saying...

“Today’s announcement shows that fan power works. At the start of this season the Premier League and its broadcasters had planned to leave match-going fans entirely locked out of their side’s matches; now thanks to the sustained pressure of our #LetUsWatch campaign all games will be available for fans.

“Many Premier League clubs have already taken money from fans, particularly season ticket holders, for matches they can’t attend so we urge them to get refunds out to those supporters as soon as possible.

“We’ve also already heard from many supporters and FSA members who are concerned about the £15 per game being charged and we’d urge BT Sport and Sky Sports to reconsider their pricing for these games.”

Statement from the FSA

How Premier League Clubs Voted On £14.95 Charge

No big surprise to see the Premier League clubs had an overwhelming majority (19-1) in favour of the decision to charge for matches.

Leicester City Vote Against Pay Per View

It's reported in the Leicester Mercury that the one club who went against the rest of the Premier League collective is Leicester City. This is backed up in various other media outlets.

It has also been reported that under fire Man Utd Chief Executive, Ed Woodward forcefully argued against the move, before backing it. Some might say that's typical of Woodward.

My opinion for what it's worth is that it's not a great idea.

I can see the Premier League has said it's an interim arrangement, and is an alternative option due to the fact that they were expecting to have some fans back in matches as recently as last weekend.

In other words, its going to help pick up the shortfall in cash from not being allowed to let fans in.

Decision smacks of greed

That said, it's too much money, and it just smacks of greed.

I also think it's a bad PR move for the Premier League to charge £14.95 per game. That's simply going to be the headline.

Also, the flimsy announcement on their website barely covered any detail. It just read like intelligence insulting corporate bullcrap.

The average person in the street just sees the Premier League as a cash cow, screwing over football fans. Charging £14.95 to watch a Premier League match just feeds into that narrative.

Clearly the Premier League are more bothered about the money, than they are their reputation.

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