In Brief

Premier League to scrap unpopular pay-per-view scheme from late November

£14.95 charge for additional games expected to be dropped after fan backlash

The Premier League is considering ending its highly unpopular pay-per-view system for televised matches, just weeks after the scheme was introduced.

Having been introduced after the October international break, it is likely to be brought to an end after the next international break in November.

“Clubs will instead look to devise a new solution that will cover the Christmas period,” the BBC reports. “A definitive decision was not taken at a shareholders’ meeting on Thursday but discussions are said to be ongoing.”

The scheme, under which fans were charged £14.95 to watch certain games, was masterminded by Sky and BT Sport, both of which are reportedly unhappy with having to show extra games at no additional cost following “Project Restart” - the operation to resume professional football after a break during the first wave of the pandemic.

The initiative “was designed to give supporters, unable to attend stadiums because of the coronavirus pandemic, access to matches that had not been included in broadcast packages,” the Daily Mail says. And Premier League clubs voted 19-1 in favour of the scheme, with Leicester City the only club to vote against the move.

But the move led to widespread condemnation, with fans boycotting the matches and donating the fee to charity instead. More than £300,000 has reportedly been raised for charity by fans refusing to watch the matches.

On Thursday a spokesperson for the Football Supporters’ Association said that fans “made clear their revulsion at the £15 cost to see their teams on Sky and BT Sport's pay-per-view platforms last month, an emotion running so deep that fan protests across the country even reached the ears of untouchable Premier League club owners”.

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