EXCLUSIVE: Premier League fans forced to pay even more to watch their team! Sky Sports and BT Sport set to unveil new pay-per-view service to show extra top-flight games as crowds are still kept away from stadiums
- Premier League’s main UK broadcasters to reveal new pay-per-view service
- An extra selection of top-flight games will be screened live but at extra cost
- The live games won’t form part of current Sky or BT subscription packages
- Premier League had grown agitated at giving away product for free in lockdown
- A number of games were shown free-to-air on Pick TV, Amazon and the BBC
- But broadcasters didn’t want to pay more so PPV service is the result
The Premier League’s main UK broadcasters are to reveal plans to launch a new pay-per-view service which will see punters asked to pay more money to view matches.
In a strategy likely to infuriate viewers – Sky Sports and BT Sport are set to unveil a new service to show an additional layer of matches that aren’t included in the designated televised schedule but at an additional cost to their general subscription fees.
Since football returned in June, all matches have been televised through Sky, BT, BBC and Amazon as part of each broadcasters’ general service.
Sky Sports and BT Sport are poised to announce a pay-per-view service for Premier League matches that are not part of their usual coverage schedules
A number of Premier League games were shown free-to-air in lockdown but the league has grown agitated at giving away its product for free in the UK
Fans who remain locked out of grounds amid the Covid-19 pandemic are likely to be angry they now have to pay more to watch their team on TV
But the Premier League have grown agitated at essentially giving away their product for free since lockdown.
Additionally broadcasters do not want to pay extra for the rights to more games – the new pay-per-view service a product of those concerns.
Sportsmail understands the idea for the new service was spawned by the Premier League – and that the league’s broadcasting partners are facilitating the move.
Sources claim the majority money accumulated by will go directly to the clubs, rather than the relevant networks.
But the move could risk angering customers who already fork out significant subscription costs every month.
Sky Sports pundits Jamie Carragher (left), Gary Neville (centre) and presenter Kelly Cates at a Premier League match earlier this year
When the Premier League restarted in June following lockdown there was pressure from the Government to allow each of the remaining 92 fixtures to be televised live.
Sky made 25 of their remaining matches available free to air on Pick TV, while four matches were screened by the BBC. All Amazon’s matches were also available without charge.
When the new season kicked off in September, all 28 games that month were televised live instead of the usual 17 with staggered kick-off times across the weekend.
However, only one – Leicester City vs Burnley – was made free-to-air and was broadcast on BBC One.
Last weekend’s round of games were also all screened live, either on Sky or BT Sport but the two-week international break was always likely to see a shift in plans.
It’s just another cost for fans
At present, a new customer needs to pay £46 a month to subscribe to Sky with sports channels included and the BT Sport channels cost an extra £13 a month on this platform. This second price is down from the usual £25.
Alternatively, the Sky Sports channels can be streamed online with a £34-a-month Now TV pass. Day passes are also available for £9.99.
BT Sport is available through various providers including BT TV, Sky and Virgin Media.
A current offer costs £44.99 a month for the sport channels plus BT’s Fibre 2 broadband.
Any pay-per-view service would add further costs if viewers wished to watch extra games.
At the moment, Sky Sports has the rights to screen 146 live Premier League matches, while BT will be showing 61 live games.
Amazon Prime will show 20 live games over two matchdays in December.