SPL Live ? More of the Same

Last updated : 29 May 2004 By Firparkcorner

The monthly subscription of £13 less a penny amounts to £156 for a season (though a on off payment of £99 will be available as a short promotion). This will entitle the viewer to a live game every week, highlights of all other matches and the usual pundits and phone-ins. The channel will have to be accessed via a $ky digibox and there is a possibility that it will be available on cable.

But the pattern of Old Firm domination on the airwaves looks set to continue. To quote from Setanta’s press release, “Our selection process for live games will be the same as previous broadcasters with games agreed eight weeks in advance and no more than four visits to any one ground.

While the majority of live games covered on 'SPL Live' are likely to feature either Rangers or Celtic due to the sheer size of their fan base, our coverage can be tailored according to the performance of the teams within the league.” .

No doubt this will mean that we will see the cameras at Fir Park mostly when the Rangers or Celtic visit to allow the say at home Old Firm fans the chance to watch and the only visits the camera crews will make to Ibrox or Parkhead will be for the ritual clashes between the big two. The pattern established by the BBC in recent years will continue. The income Motherwell receives from Setanta will probably be cancelled out by the loss in cash through the turnstiles as punters take the easy option of watching from the pub.

There seems little benefit for ‘Well fans in the deal and the best way of supporting the club remains the same as always, either buy a season ticket or pay at the gate. Clubs are beginning to learn the lesson that relying on TV income can be dangerous and any money gained by this route should be seen as a bonus.