Research: 1.25m Brits have pirated EPL football
August 4, 2022
By Colin Mann
With the English Premier League season kicking off on August 5th, 1.25 million Brits (2.4 per cent) admit to having illegally streamed at least one Premier League game over the past 12 months, according to new research from personal finance comparison site finder.com.
This is close to the average viewership for Premier League games shown on Sky Sports, which was around 2 million people in the 19/20 season (last available average).
More broadly, a total of 2 million people (3.8 per cent) said they had streamed some form of sport illegally over the past 12 months, with popular sports such as Formula 1, Cricket and US sports, that are not available on terrestrial, likely to contribute to this figure.
The most popular streaming service that shows sports was Amazon Prime, with almost half (48 per cent) of Brits saying they have watched something on it at some point in the past 12 months. This was followed by Sky Go with 17 per cent having watched it, NOW (that allows people to purchase sports packages) with 12.6 per cent, while BT TV had 6.8 per cent of the population watch it.
Movies and TV shows also saw plenty of people watching them through illicit means. 2.25 million people (4.3 per cent) opted not to go to the cinema, pay for a movie at home or for a streaming service last year.
Despite this, the number of people who have used streaming services has risen since Finder last conducted this research in 2019. Almost nine in 10 people (89.1 per cent) have used a legal streaming service over the past 12 months, up from 82 per cent in 2019.
Netflix remains the most popular service with 62.3 per cent of Brits having used it, up from 54 per cent. Disney+ is a newcomer, having not existed when the research last ran, and comes in third place with 32.8 per cent of Brits having used it (Amazon Prime was second).
Following Sky Go and NOW is TV Player with 8.9 per cent and Apple TV + with 8 per cent.