BBC in line for more top-flight games

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Total Football - By Ben Rumsby

The BBC could be awarded more live Premier League games this sea­son if clubs re­verse their de­ci­sion to block fans from watch­ing 160 of them on tele­vi­sion.

The 20 mem­bers of the world’s rich­est league will this week de­cide whether to con­tinue screen­ing all of their fix­tures while fans re­main banned from at­tend­ing them due to the coron­avirus cri­sis.

Clubs agreed at a Premier League share­hold­ers’ meet­ing on Thurs­day to re­con­sider their re­fusal to al­low more than 220 games to be shown live in the UK fol­low­ing in­tense pres­sure – in­clud­ing a last-ditch in­ter­ven­tion from the Gov­ern­ment.

The league im­me­di­ately be­gan talks with its broad­cast part­ners with a view to screen­ing ev­ery game from the start of the sea­son on Sat­ur­day un­til at least Oct 1. Those part­ners in­clude the BBC, which be­came the first ter­res­trial broad­caster to show live Premier League foot­ball last sea­son when it re­turned be­hind closed doors.

The cor­po­ra­tion was awarded four matches un­der Project Res­tart partly to com­pen­sate it for that sus­pen­sion and partly due to the im­pact of the Gov­ern­ment or­der­ing the Premier League to show ev­ery game live – some free-to-air – un­til the end of the cam­paign.

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