Premier League chiefs ready to 'roll over' current TV deal into next season

Author: [email protected] (John Cross)
This post originally appeared on Mirror – Football

Premier League bosses are ready to “roll over” the current TV deal into next season.

Sky, BT Sport and Amazon would normally have announced the next round of rights for live games starting from the 2022/23 season by now but the pandemic has put negotiations on hold.

It has also complicated talks because no-one quite knows what they are bidding for with no fans currently allowed in stadiums and doubts over when full numbers will be allowed back.

That has prompted Prem bosses to discuss with the current rights holders to extend the current terms for an extra 12 months and begin negotiations at the turn of next year for the new long-term deal.

The Premier League declined to comment but it is understood that the TV companies are open to the suggestion and talks have already taken place.

They would need Government approval do effectively do a “private sale” between the existing broadcasters rather than open up for new bidders.

It would also suit clubs who are trying to plan for next season without any fixed budgets for the long term future.

The deal could then be structured to allow Sky, BT and Amazon to retain similar positions to those agreed in 2018 when the rights packages fell by 10pc to £4.6bn for the three seasons to 2022.

Sky spent £3.75bn on 128 live games a season, while BT invested £975m on 52 matches a season while Amazon picked up the final packages of 20 matches a season for its streaming service.

Premier League chief executive Richard Masters has insisted he does not expect rights values to fall despite the pandemic but the TV companies would have been pushing for a reduction as games without fans are less attractive.

Clubs agreed to pay back cash to TV companies last year who argued the games were not what they bought and by delaying the next process it would allow the value to return to normal.

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