A few of you may remember my article from back in February, regarding ticket prices. If you’ve not read it, Here’s a link to the article. Now this article is a sort of follow-up to that and it’s about Sky screwing over loyal fans out of going to matches.
So many fans this season have had plans ruined because of Sky changing the match days at the last minute, such examples include Everton vs Newcastle and Sunderland vs Fulham, another example was Manchester United vs Brighton this season, it was changed to a 7:45 kick off which meant hundreds of Brighton fans couldn’t go!
I’ll start off the article with a personal experience. At the end of April it is my 21st, 8 of us were planning to travel down on the Saturday, enjoy a pub crawl alongside the river and go to watch Fulham vs Sunderland, everything was set up, hotels booked and then just two weeks ago, Sky announced that game was going to be played on a Friday night.
In a joint commitment with broadcaster Sky Sports, the EFL has vowed to ensure all its clubs are given at least five weeks’ notice ahead of any matches selected for live television coverage.
Yet they made this decision 3 weeks before the game, so why have these promises if you’re not going to abide by them? Fans have enough trouble paying over the odds for the match tickets themselves without Sky screwing them around. And it’s been happening for years, for years Sky have been screwing over the fans and something needs to be done.
It seems each passing year, fans and football are seemingly becoming detached more and more, if its not talking about a winter break, it’ll be about rising ticket prices or VAR. And something needs to be done, for example fans in Germany and Italy have protested on TV companies changing their games to midweek features.
Sky and the league need to realise this isn’t okay, the fans make the game, without fans football would be dead. And another thing, the clubs need to learn this isn’t OK either, if the game is changed after the 5 week window those teams can reject the fixture, so really Sunderland and Fulham should have done better and the same case for other teams. The sooner teams and the league stop being pushovers, the sooner Sky will think twice about changing fixtures at horrific times
However, what can us fans do about it? Protest. As shown above, other European teams fans do it, and we need to show them we’re sick of it. Protesting does work.
For example during the 2015/2016 season, Liverpool announced a hefty rise in ticket prices for the following season. So Liverpool fans decided to have a walk out on the 77th minute. What happened? The owners did a complete u-turn and cancelled the increase in ticket prices.
Another baffling fixture was the Tottenham vs Manchester City game from last Saturday, that was moved to a 7:45 kick off, and some fans had to stay over because even if the match finished on time, they’d still have to be allowed out of ground, then walk down to the underground and travel all the way across London, they’d miss the last train.
So how do you feel? Should fans protest against Sky changing the fixtures? Let me know in the comments.
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