When it comes to live football, Sky really hold all the aces. Jamie Redknapp aside, their punditry is relevant and relatively interesting, whereas ITV are lumbered with Gareth Southgate and Alan Shearer.
But in TV Highlights land the Beeb are undisputed kings, so football fans will be delighted to hear that they’ve extended their contract with the Premier League by three seasons.
This means that Match of the Day and MOTD2 will be on our screens up until the 2015-16 season (and hopefully beyond) after the Beeb had a bid of £179.7m accepted by the Premier League.
How much opposition they had is unclear, because Sky seem happy enough to allow the Beeb the sideline (plus the outcry of completely removing the national sport from free TV would be epic) and ITV’s dabble with a Saturday night highlights package was a disaster. Let us never speak its name..
Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore said: “The free-to-air highlights are extremely important to the broadcast reach of the Premier League; allowing the competition and our clubs to be seen by the maximum possible number of fans across the country.”
“The BBC has done a fantastic job for fans of Premier League clubs by providing quality coverage and analysis across their programmes.”
BBC director of sport Barbara Slater added: “We’ve seen audiences for MOTD grow in recent years and the programme remains one of the BBC’s best loved and most iconic brands. The new contract will see MOTD celebrate its 50th birthday.”