It’s a strange quirk Premier Leaguetonight’s important match between the leaders TV rights Arsenal and at risk of relegation. Everton It will not be shown live in the UK, but will be broadcast in Denmark, the Dominican Republic and Djibouti.

Choose any country or region in the world: Premier League lists 39 individual international TV deals on its website, covering almost every part of the world.

But there are limits that fans at home have faced for a long time. Currently, only 200 of the 380 Premier League games per season are allowed to be shown live in the UK: 128 of them are owned by Sky Sports, 52 are shown by BT Sport and the other 20 are broadcast by Amazon. Saturday ‘blackout’ – A law dating back to the 1960s that prevented football from being shown on UK television between 2:45 pm and 5:15 pm in order to protect lower league clubs’ participation.

The Arsenal-Everton match was affected by an unusual set of circumstances. The match was originally scheduled for 3 p.m. on Saturday, September 10, but Queen II. Elizabeth’s death caused that weekend’s fixtures to be postponed by both the Premier League and the English Football League (oddly, the Football Association also canceled base matches in the country).

Three weeks ago, the Premier League announced that the game will be played alongside Liverpool v Wolves on Wednesday, March 1 at 7:45 pm, as all four teams have been eliminated from the FA Cup and therefore midweek is free while Cup games are played. was planned.

However, as Arsenal-Everton will initially be played during the Saturday blackout, it was not among the original TV picks for that September weekend, meaning that none of England’s three live broadcasters owned the rights to the game and therefore could not be played. broadcasting. TalkSport radio will broadcast live radio commentary of the match, but TV viewers will have to wait until Saturday’s edition. match of the day to catch some key points

The blackout rule and the limited number of games on British television is a divisive issue. A spokesperson for the Football Fans Association said Independent that the organization strongly supports limiting the number of matches broadcast and the FSA continues to support the blackout. The FSA believes there are already too many matches on TV and wants fewer matches to be broadcast live to encourage and benefit the going, paying fans.

But the FSA acknowledges that football fans have to pay a lot of money to subscribe to Sky Sports, BT Sport and Amazon Prime Video if they want to watch just part of their team’s games on TV. The idea of ​​splitting Premier League matches between multiple broadcasters was to avoid Sky’s monopoly on football, but the impact was at the cost to the consumer. As a result, there is an increase in illegal online broadcasts that the Premier League is trying to eradicate.

After relying on the same TV model for so many years, EFL is considering ending its 3 p.m. blackout commitment to look for a more innovative solution for how to broadcast its product. Tech companies like Netflix and Meta have been associated with rights.

However, it is unlikely that the Premier League will change course anytime soon, given its hugely lucrative current deals and current broadcasting contracts that will run until the end of the 2024-25 season. Apple has been tipped to blow up Sky Sports and get it out of the water when the time comes, after securing a 10-year deal for Major League Soccer, but no confirmed interest.

So whether you love them or hate them, the Premier League’s TV rules will remain the same. Arsenal’s match against Everton may be unusual as the reason for its postponement, but many matches like this will continue to be hidden from our screens in the near future.