Sport ITV 'could have free-to-air Premier League games if they buy BT Sport'
Inside the explosive meeting of the Premier League's 14 'other' clubs
EXCLUSIVE BY MIKE KEEGAN: From the kick-off, it was clear this was to be a Premier League summit with a difference. The subtext was clear - we were very much in off-the-record territory. Hoffman turned it over to chief executive Richard Masters, who had also come ready for the fight. He was armed with explosive quotes from none other than Boris Johnson, with whom he had spoken in the morning. The Prime Minister, while a staunch free marketeer, had blasted the breakaway European Super League as ‘anti-competitive’ and had declared that a ‘legislative bomb’ should be dropped to stop it – and that ‘it should be done now’.
ITV is reportedly among the frontrunners to buy BT Sport which could seeand matches broadcast on free-to-air TV.
BT confirmed this week that they are in negotiations to sell a stake in their sports business BT Sport with Amazon, Disney and DAZN all said to be interested.
ITV belongs to the chasing pack, according to , and should the British channel be successful some of England's top-flight matches and Champions League ties could be shown on terrestrial television.
In a statement on Thursday, BT said: 'Further to media reports, BT can confirm that early discussions are being held with a number of select strategic partners, to explore ways to generate investment, strengthen our sports business, and help take it to the next stage in its growth.
'Big Six' club chiefs asked to step down in PL meeting
Executives from the clubs who joined the now-abandoned European Super League have been handed an ultimatum to step down from key Premier League sub-committees. Sky News has learned Richard Masters, the Premier League chief executive, contacted executives on Wednesday including Bruce Buck, the Chelsea chairman, and Vinai Venkatesham, Arsenal chief executive, to request they relinquish their roles on the working groups.
'The discussions are confidential and may or may not lead to an outcome.'
After the announcement BT shares rose 2.5 per cent, or 3.95p, to 163.8p – their highest level since January 2020.
It is not known how much BT Sport is worth. However, after years of losses, it is said to have broken even and become profitable thanks to price hikes.
BT, Britain's biggest broadband and mobile operator, moved into sports broadcasting in 2012 when it won the rights to show a package of live Premier League matches.
It later added the Champions League - after winning the rights from Sky Sports - and other sports such as rugby union to the service to take on Sky, the dominant player in British sports broadcasting.
BT's current Premier League package, which cost them £885million, allows them to show 32 matches for three seasons from 2019-20. Their Champions League package was a three-year, £1.2billion deal until 2024, giving them the UK rights to every game in the competition.
Premier League 'will expel clubs who try to join future Super League'
The 'Big Six' clubs - Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal and Tottenham - withdrew from the breakaway competition on Tuesday after a severe backlash.The 'Big Six' clubs - Manchester United, Liverpool, Chelsea, Manchester City, Arsenal and Tottenham - withdrew from the breakaway European competition on Tuesday after a severe backlash from supporters.
Premier League chiefs are ready to keep their current big-money TV deal rolling into next season with negotiations on a new long-term contract from 2022-23 set to be put on hold, according to reports.
Top-flight fixtures are currently shared between BT Sport, Sky and Amazon - while the BBC has also shown live games during the pandemic - and the announcement of rights from 2022-23 would typically have been revealed by this point.
But as a result of the uncertainty surrounding the return of large crowds due to the relaxing of lockdown measures, claim talks have already been held to extend the terms in place at this point for another 12 months.
The coronavirus pandemic initially placed talks over the rights on hold but, with the new term fast approaching, preparations are now underway to ensure a smooth transition for broadcasters.
BT, however, is now focused on an ambitious plan to roll out fibre broadband to 20 million homes and businesses this decade, which will require billions of pounds of investment.
The move to sell all or part of BT Sport goes against BT's ambitious bid to build a sports broadcasting business to take on Sky over the last decade.
The company has spent billions to establish itself, signing deals to show a number of sports including UFC, boxing, MotoGP and Australian rules football.
Man Utd facing three games in five days after Liverpool game is rearranged .
Manchester United face three games in five days after their home game against Liverpool was moved to May 13.Last Sunday's scheduled clash between the two most decorated sides in English football was called off after United fans protesting the ownership of the Glazer family prevented their players from leaving the Lowry Hotel pre-match and also stormed the stadium.