The Football League has announced that they have reached agreement with Sky Sports on a brand new five-year television deal. However, it hasn’t pleased everyone.
The deal is heavily weighted toward Championship clubs, as you would expect. Worth a reported £595million over five years and starting from next season, it represents a 35% increase on the value of the existing deal and runs until 2024.
It’s reported that League Two clubs will receive around about £600,000 per season, although trying to find these figures officially confirmed is tricky. That’s likely to be in the right ballpark though.
The likelihood of any League Two games being shown live is remote, except in the play-offs that is. Within the agreement, Sky Sports have the rights to show a minimum of 20 matches from League One and Two combined, although very few regular season League Two games will likely make the cut.
EFL TV deal at-a-glance
- 138 live games per season
- Majority from Championship, though a minimum of 20 from Leagues One and Two (combined)
- All play-off games across the Championship, League One and League Two.
- 15 Carabao Cup games, including the final
- Semi-finals and final of Checkatrade Trophy
- Begins 2019/20 season and runs until end of 2023/24 season
- Includes continued streaming rights for clubs via the iFollow platform
Championship clubs “gravely concerned” and feel “ignored”
The announcement of the deal was not met with a positive response from some of the big clubs in the Championship. A group of clubs believe their concerns about a potential new deal were ignored and that the rights have been under-sold.
It is thought that their frustrations relate mainly to the EFL’s decision to package up streaming rights within a long-term deal, in effect promising more games for less money. They believe this has damaged the ability big clubs have of controlling and selling their own live match streams and the pricing around it. In fairness, they may have a point.
Some of the clubs who are reportedly opposed to the deal include Leeds United, Aston Villa, WBA and Derby County.
Expect to hear further follow-up about the deal from Championship clubs in the coming weeks as well as talk of a ‘revolt’ and ‘Premier League 2’. Or maybe those clubs could concentrate on just getting promoted back to the Premier League.