Top-flight clubs set to discuss policy of having all games on live television
Premier League clubs will meet next week to decide whether to continue to allow all their games to be televised live in the UK after making another full round of matches available.
Clubs yesterday approved an extension of the current policy – although only until the international break – having previously reversed their decision to block fans watching 160 matches this season, most of which now look set to be played behind closed doors due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Clubs must now decide whether to continue to award further games to Sky Sports, BT Sport, Amazon and the BBC, find an alternative method of showing them or risk the wrath of fans by reimposing a blackout on more than 40 per cent of them.
Yesterday also saw the Premier League scrap 8.15pm kick-offs while the Government’s new 10pm curfew on pubs remains in force.
Tuesday’s announcement by Boris Johnson led to Liverpool’s clash with Arsenal on Monday being brought forward by 15 minutes, with the original kick-off time of 8.15pm risking those watching in bars potentially missing its climax. That had prompted a backlash from fans on social media, with one user writing: “Looking forward to Liverpool and Arsenal fans getting booted out of the pub on Monday when the match is at 85 minutes.”
Fulham’s showdown with Aston Villa was also brought forward by 15 minutes to 5.45pm to ensure no prospect of the games overlapping.
It was unclear yesterday what the pub curfew, which begins tonight, would mean for Carabao Cup ties that could go to penalties. Liverpool travel to Lincoln City and Manchester City host Bournemouth in 7.45pm kick-offs.