Celtic have announced that two fixtures have been moved to accommodate Sky Sports coverage.
The Bhoys’ Valentine’s Day clash with St. Johnstone and 7th March tie against Dundee United had previously been scheduled for Saturday afternoons. That would’ve limited the Celtic supporters’ options in terms of being able to watch either match.
In a move that may put relationships under some strain, both matches will be aired on Sky Sports (Glasgow Times). Also, the fixtures will also both be played midday on a Sunday.
By then, Celtic might be worth watching. The Bhoys have a packed schedule ahead, with 3 games in hand over city rivals and league leaders Rangers (SPFL).
It isn’t even the first time this week that Sky Sports have made Celtic headlines. Just yesterday, the broadcaster’s pundit Andy Walker claimed that Dermot Desmond will ring the changes. Earlier this week, Sky Sports journalist Anthony Joseph spoke about the current circumstances at the club, vindicating many of the supporters.
Are Sky Sports trying to win over Celtic supporters?
As Talking Baws published in 2018, Sky Sports’ Scottish coverage isn’t universally popular. When the broadcaster won the sole rights to air Scottish Premiership games on TV, a lot of fans were disappointed.
However, to their credit, Sky Sports have improved their reputation amongst the Celtic support in recent times. Allowing Andy Walker to speak passionately about the club before Monday’s 1-1 draw with Hibs was inspired. Anthony Joseph’s unedited twitter thread is another example of how Sky Sports are capitalising on polling the Celtic fans.
While probably still too expensive for many supporters, the broadcaster at least give an option to fans without season tickets. Celtic’s Pass to Paradise allows season book holders to watch matches for free, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
This way, though, with two games being shuffled for broadcast reasons, far more people are able to legally watch the games. It’ll also raise cash for the club, with KPMG reporting that Celtic have made a 15% decrease in revenue from 2019 to 2020.
So, it’s good news for Celtic fans, broadly speaking. The restaurants will most likely be closed on Valentine’s Day, regardless. Instead of a candlelit dinner, it’s a 12pm kick-off against St. Johnstone.