BT, Sky score broadcast rights for Premier League in 2019

Premier League Saturday Round-up     
              Premier League Saturday Round-up

Premier League Saturday Round-up Premier League Saturday Round-up

The league has sold its United Kingdom broadcasting rights for five of the seven packages for the 2019-2022 seasons to Sky Sport and BT Sport, the two current holders of those rights.

Meanwhile, BT Sport won the rights to 32 Saturday lunchtime matches during each of the three Premier League campaigns, for which the company said it paid £295m per season. Its four packs of rights total 128 games a season, up from 126 matches now.

Sky, which has been bankrolling the EPL since 1992, will pay £3.58m for 128 Premier League games a season from 2019/20.

What is not known is whether the Australian rights which are now held by Optus, will return to Foxtel.

"As IHS Markit expected, competition from the big tech firms for the main season-long packages failed to materialise", said IHS Markit research director, Ted Hall.

"The Premier League is undoubtedly the most competitive and exciting domestic league in the world, so we're delighted that our customers will be able to continue enjoying Saturday games on BT Sport", Marc Allera, chief executive of BT's Consumer division, commented in the statement. It is the first time an entire schedule of fixture can be aired live domestically, and there is intrigue over whether digital companies like Amazon, Netflix or Facebook will use them as a chance to gain a foothold in the Premier League.

Having sold rights to live coverage of 160 games per season, the Premier League said there was "interest from multiple bidders" for the remaining two live broadcast packages.

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Sky and BT are both understood to be paying almost UK£2 million less per match than they pay under their current deal worth UK£5.136 billion in total.

However a spokesperson for Sky told that the cost saving may not be passed on to customers, as the broadcaster looks to invest in other broadcasting content areas.

In 2015, the Premier League then took a total of £5.1bn for the next three years.

Premier League Executive Chairman Richard Scudamore was pleased with the amount he'd managed to secure despite it being less than the previous deal that was worth £5.14bn.

This, of course, was a big factor in the acceleration of, well, everything financial in the English game - salaries, transfer fees, prize money, it all skyrocketed in the last couple seasons, to the point where Sunderland, the 20th place finisher in the Premier League previous year, got almost £100 million in prize money for getting relegated (Champions Chelsea got £146M).

BT said it has been "financially disciplined" during the bidding process, and that it expects to make returns through subscription, wholesale, commercial and advertising revenues.

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