Sat 3pm Kick Offs
For the most of us, we all grew up and the day and time above were synonymous with football. Times however have changed and now when you really are the only show in town for the broadcasters, it’s impossible to get a season’s worth of these games.
Today we have the announcement that both of the home games after the split will be on a Friday night and then a Sunday lunchtime, so we have had all the 3pm kos we are gonna have in the SPFL this season. The vast majority of fans have taken to Twitter, Facebook and smoke signals to vent their frustration.
Now, I live within 10 miles of Celtic Park. For the games I go along to, the kick off time really doesn’t affect me. However I understand that for those travelling from far and wide, it is not great, in fact extremely annoying. So the shouts today of “F**k Sky and BT, we don’t need their paltry contributions”. The logic being that if we were to dump Sky and BT, the sub 2 million quid we get would be made up in increased season ticket sales as folk would come back to the games.
Now, Sammy here loves a stat, so I looked into our fixtures this season and I’m sorry to have to say it, but our lack of 3pm Saturday kick offs really isn’t the broadcasters fault.
Before I explain, let me get something clear!! I’m verging on heading up a revolution of Scottish Football fans hitting Sky in the pocket since their disgusting Sky deals for EPL, Thierry Henry etc. For me, for Sky to write to us all and say they want to charge us more when they will be showing less football given that they have lost the Champions League after this year, is taking the proverbials!
There are fans in London and Middlesborough who pay the same money as me, yet their clubs earn multiples of what mine does. Why should we subsidise the biggest hype in Europe?
Then the BBC. A fee we are FORCED to pay, is not distributed evenly across the football coverage in the country. Again, fair?? I think not.
I would take every opportunity to have a go, but as I try to do at all turns, I cannot be a hypocrite demanding fairness from broadcasters without showing them the same in my arguments.
This season Celtic have 17 home Scottish Premiership matches before the split.
- We have had only 4 games at 3pm on a Saturday!
- We have had 5 Wednesday night 7.45 kos. (including tonight)
- 6 games were moved to the Sunday due to Europa League
- 2 games were moved to Saturday lunchtimes.
So 13 games have been moved. Out of those, only 3 were televised and only 2 were moved purely for TV. These were the first 2 home games, vs Dundee Utd and Aberdeen. Both moved to 12.45 on the Saturday. 1 of which always happens due to flag unfurling at 1st league game. So that’s the only 2 matches moved by Sky for their benefit. TWO out of 17. Now keep in mind that in seasons gone by, 2 games against THEM would always be moved, regardless of TV due to Policing.
Perhaps if we hadn’t dropped into the Europa League a few of those 6 home games would have been 3pm on the Saturday. Or here’s a thought…..
If we hadn’t gone on a wee jolly in the summer and in January, moving league games, then that may have given us a couple more games?
I also don’t buy that no TV coverage means more season books. If I’m not mistaken we have only had 3 live league games on Sky at home this year, 4 by time the season is over. BT will show 1. It’s our away games that they want to cover. So season tickets aren’t really affected.
Then, our games being covered on a national broadcaster directly affects sponsorship. Do you think that all affiliated sponsors would pay as much when only our own fans watching via Celtic TV (which bear in mind for Sat 3pm games cannot be live due to the laws of UK broadcasting) can see them?
The lack of 3pm Saturday games comes down squarely at our own fault this year. Cancelling games for foreign friendlies and failing to get into the Champions League moved at least 8 matches. The majority of which would’ve been Saturdays.
As I write this I have checked Twitter to see the amazing contribution of our support in the Foodbank donations tonight before the game. That is what the club is about and it is fantastic to see. Well done to all involved.