Sky Sports says it has strengthened its position as the home of English football with a new deal to show live coverage of the EFL – which covers the second, third and fourth tiers of the professional game – until 2024, offering Sky customers more matches and more ways to watch than ever before.
The new agreement means that from the start of the 2019/20 season, Sky Sports Football will show up to 183 matches exclusively live each year in the Sky Bet Championship, Sky Bet League One, Sky Bet League Two, Carabao Cup and Checkatrade Trophy – a 26 per cent increase in the number of games on its current deal.
In addition, and for the first time Sky Sports will be able to broadcast 80 Sky Bet Championship midweek matches across interactive and digital platforms, taking the total number of potential matches available to Sky Sports customers and EFL fans to over 260, from the current 145 games. The additional midweek games will also be available across the EFL iFollow streaming service.
The agreement includes:
“This is great news for EFL fans and our viewers, with more live games than ever before and more opportunities for fans to watch their teams live,” declared Barney Francis, Sky Sports Managing Director. “With a new dedicated football channel, newly enhanced digital platforms, adding more games means Sky Sports is getting even better for football fans.”
“Securing the EFL strengthens the Sky Sports service even further with the rights that matter most to our customers. This follows similar enhanced deals with Sky Sports becoming the exclusive home of F1 from 2019 for five years, and the only place to see England home cricket and the new domestic T20 competition live through to 2024.”
“Viewing of live EFL games grew by 12 per cent year-on-year last season, and is up a further 7 per cent so far this season. Fans value our live EFL coverage and we are delighted to be able to offer even more in the coming years.”
“Sky Sports has for many years been a hugely important and valued partner of the EFL and we are delighted to extend our relationship by a further five years,” added EFL Chief Executive Shaun Harvey. “I would like to thank all those who submitted bids and we now look forward to working with the Sky Sports team as they cement their position as the broadcast home of live EFL matches.”
“In agreeing a deal over five seasons, it delivers a guaranteed increase in the level of income distributed to EFL Clubs from 2019/20 and long-term financial certainty was an absolute priority throughout this process. It is a partnership that as well as having mutual tangible benefits, allows the EFL to maximise reach and exposure for its competitions, alongside providing further opportunities for Clubs to generate additional incremental revenues through iFollow.”
Together with up to 183 live matches on Sky Sports Football, Sky Sports will continue to offer in depth coverage of the EFL across a range of platforms, including the Sky Sports App with enhanced live player, skysports.com and Sky Sports News.