The FA has confirmed that the Saturday 3pm TV blackout will be lifted when the new season starts, making it likely that all Premier League games will be available to UK viewers – much like as they were during Project Restart.
Games will continue to be played inside empty stadiums due to the pandemic, and there are concerns that if all matches aren’t made available, fans could turn to illegal streaming services to watch their team play.
Originally the Premier League had said that the original Sky, Amazon and BT Sport contracts would be honoured, meaning that only the 40 per cent of games intended for broadcast would be seen. That now seems almost certain to change.
The 3pm Championship, League One and League Two games are set to be made available on Sky Sports or via the streaming platform iFollow.
The Saturday afternoon blackout of football was introduced in the 1980s to encourage fans to continue attending matches and to promote participation at grassroots level.
The FA is hopeful that fans will be allowed to return to stadiums in limited numbers towards the end of October.