Sky Sports to show 7 fewer Premiership matches than their quota; refused key Celtic games
It looks as though Sky Sports is set to let down Scottish football supporters once again this season.
Last week, Joel Sked of the Scotsman stated that the TV broadcaster had 13 slots remaining in their contract to show Scottish Premiership games. And incredibly, after the split announcement [SPFL], it appears as though they’re going to leave as many as 7 of those blank.
Sky are showing every single Celtic post-split match which is a boost to supporters. However, outside of Motherwell vs Rangers, they’re refusing to take any other games. That’s despite the fact European spots and relegation battles have still to be finalised.
Not one match from the bottom 6 schedule has been chosen for TV coverage. Something that’s hugely angered the wider Scottish football support on social media.
In addition to that, Celtic fans are right to wonder why on earth a host of key away games were left without coverage earlier this season. Vital trips to the likes of Motherwell, Livingston, Hibernian, and Aberdeen were all snubbed by Sky.
Instead, Celtic supporters who have already paid a Sky Sports package had to then fork out extra to watch their team on a Pay Per View subscription via official club streams.
Massive concerns over Sky Sports’ handling of Premiership coverage
You could understand it if other clubs in Scotland had been selected for coverage instead, but that hasn’t been the case. Rangers’ win over St Mirren on Sunday was only the 35th live game Sky has chosen this season. The Scotsman reports that they have a full quota of 48 in total.
Yet as things stand, only 41 of those are going to be filled. Unless of course late changes to the schedule are made in the coming days. You wouldn’t bet your house on it though, that’s for sure.
It mirrors exactly what happened with Sky’s coverage last season too. The broadcaster ended the season having only shown 41 of a possible 48 matches [The Scotsman]. Therefore, they’re on course to snub the exact same number of slots this time around.
It’s even more frustrating when we had big away matches refused earlier this season. At the time it was at least palatable as the option was still there to broadcast other clubs in Scotland. But there’s been a flat-out refusal to do so.
Come the end of the season, Sky will have broadcast only 34 of their 41 matches with neither Celtic or Rangers involved. It doesn’t say much about their interest in the rest of Scottish football. Neither did their refusal to broadcast either the Edinburgh or Dundee derbies a fortnight ago.
This isn’t impressive, and it can’t be something the SPFL as a whole are too happy with. For Sky to potentially leave 7 slots for a second consecutive campaign? Discussions need to be held regarding the reasons for this.