Pay-per-view: Fans are being priced out of football

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Since the introduction of the pay-per-view model in the Premier League, critics believe that the league is pricing viewers of the league out of watching Premier League games.

Before the introduction of the policy, especially when the coronavirus pandemic affected the normal operation of the league and prevented football fans from gaining access to match venues, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) was transmitting some of the Premier League matches for free to encourage people to stay at home amid the pandemic. This was the first time since the establishment of the Premier League in 1992 that BBC was involved in the transmission of Premier League matches.

On the other hand, Sky Sports was allowed to transmit 25 Premier League matches for free during the last part of the 2019-2020 Premier League season.

However, all that has changed as the Premier League clubs have agreed to adopt the pay-per-view system to generate revenue for clubs. This means that a viewer will have to pay an extra £14.95 to watch a selected Premier League match via BT Sport Box Office or Sky Sports Box Office.

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Pay-per-view: Fans are being priced out of football

As reported by Futballnews earlier, the system has since started amidst agitations against the policy from different quarters. Even as that, critics of the pay-per-view model are insisting that the Premier League can still overturn the decision before the pay-per-view model becomes fully operational in November.

Nevertheless, some pundits who have shown support for the new system want the broadcasters and the Premier League to reduce the £14.95 price tag placed on each Premier League match selected for the system. This, according to those who are advocating for a price reduction, would go a long way to encourage the masses to keep watching Premier League matches from home without being priced out.

As it stands, West Brom‘s manager, Slaven Bilic, is the most recent critic of the pay-per-view policy. He has argued that the policy would price football fans out of the game if it is allowed to stand.

The coach insisted that football is not a luxurious game like polo or golf but a game for the masses that should be allowed to be enjoyed affordably.

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“Football is not polo or golf,” Slaven Bilic said. It’s not my money; it’s their money. Football should not be free, but affordable.

“Football is the sport for masses, a working-class sport, and it should be affordable to everybody.”

Slaven Bilic is not the first football personality that has publicly criticized the pay-per-view policy. A couple of other personalities and groups including Manchester United‘s legend, Gary Neville, and the Football Supporters’ Association, have risen their voices against the policy. It is left in the hands of the Premier League and the broadcast partners to decide whether to bend or continue with the policy as planned.

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