The first stage of the renewal of Premier League UK TV rights ended to day.
Bidding broadcasters had to get their packages to the Premier League by today, for the right to show live Premier League matches for the three seasons from 2016/17.
Sky Sports will be aiming to keep their majority of matches, with BT Sports aiming to increase the matches from their current 38.
Under the current deal, Sky paid £2.3bn for the rights to 116 games per season , whilst BT Sport paid £738m for the rights to 38 matches per season.
Analysis predict those prices may rise as much as 45% as the UK broadcasters battle it out for the next batch of matches.
But Sky and BT may be joined by other broadcasters . Disvcovery, who own Eurosport, have been rumoured to be interested in bidding for some matches. As have BeIN Sports.
From the 2016/17 season there are slightly more games on offer – 168, compared to the current 154. These 168 games are split across seven packages offering a variety of kick-off times and “first pick” opportunities. Each of the packages must be bid on separately and no single buyer can win more than 126 of the 168 matches on offer. For the first time in the Premier League era, up to 10 Friday night matches will be included.
The match packages are broken down as follows:
28 games at 4pm Sunday, most 1st picks.
28 games at 5:30pm Sat, 2nd largest number of 1st picks.
28 games at 12:30pm Sat, a few 1st picks.
28 games at 1:30pm Sunday, no 1st picks
28 games Fri/Mon evening, includes 10 on a Friday
14 games includes 1st and 2nd pick midweeks (3 rounds = 6 games), plus others at weekends.
14 games includes 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th picks on the two BH rounds (8 games), plus others at weekends