Local radio station Wirral Radio has this morning closed, going off-air for good, and taking the live Tranmere match commentary service with it.
The station had provided a live home and away commentary service to Tranmere fans for the last couple of years, and while it started a little bit rough around the edges, it had progressed to a slick production in recent months and had become increasingly popular.
Wirral Radio also provided a vital lifeline to fans that previously relied on BBC Radio Merseyside for live match commentaries, with the BBC withdrawing that service presumably due to the club’s extended stay in non-league.
Options for live commentary now will rest purely with Tranmere’s own official commentary through the Mixlr online platform. This can be accessed via the club website or Twitter feed on matchdays.
We’d like to extend both our thanks and best wishes for the future to the Wirral Radio team that delivered Tranmere coverage.
Decline of Tranmere coverage on the radio
The lack of regional radio coverage for the club only underlines the importance of Tranmere returning to the Football League, and quick.
Rovers used to be able to rely on a wealth of coverage in the late 1990s and through the early 2000s, with even Radio City providing occasional match commentaries of league games. As Tranmere’s descent through the divisions began, BBC Radio Merseyside continued to deliver for fans.
The SWA could rely on Derek Jones and the BBC team for commentary of every match throughout League One and League Two, home and away, something that continued even in to the first season in non-league.
While radio coverage may have declined, one of the few perks of being in non-league is the increased coverage of Tranmere games shown live on television through BT Sport. Rovers were picked for live coverage on numerous occasions in their first two seasons at this level, and will next be on TV on March at home to Eastleigh.
There is also a highlights show on a Sunday evening, although a many of us would gladly swap this for the 30 seconds of highlights spewed out by Channel 5’s Football League show on a Saturday evening if it meant the club returning to the EFL.