SEVEN, TEN, FOXTEL FINALLY SMOKE PEACE
By Ben Jensen AS ANNOUNCED on The Cattery on 22 October last year, Foxtel will be narrowcasting four games per week for this season and beyond (it can't be broadcast if only a minority can receive it). Channels Seven and Ten, who together paid $780 Million for five seasons' worth of TV rights, have fought (negotiated?) Foxtel tooth and nail to the almost literal last minute, but finally allowed Foxtel to screw their price down to just $315.5 Million. This equates to $50 Million in cash per year, plus $10 Million in free advertising for the AFL. Seven and Ten originally demanded $60 Million for just three games.
Pay TV only matches will be shown on Fox Sports 1, with the exception of Friday night games into Queensland, New South Wales and the ACT, which will be shown on the 'Main Event' channel free of charge.
Diehard fans will be delighted to note old Fox Footy shows 'On The Couch', 'The Winners' and 'League Teams' will return to Fox Sports, and a new Friday night round preview show 'Before The Bounce'.
Fox Sports can be viewed on Foxtel itself, Austar or Optus TV, but is now currently available on SelecTV nor Neighbourhood Cable.
THE link above contains everything you need to know about the coverage on a game by week basis.
Last Year's Article - 22 October 2006
AFL boss Andrew Demetriou was, naturally, 'delighted'.
"The AFL is delighted with this agreement and the outstanding job that our broadcast partners are doing for football on every level. We are in the privileged position that our free to air and pay television partners will now take our games to more people than ever before in our history, with fans across Australia enjoying more live coverage than ever before.
IF you're a real footy fan and don't have Pay TV, you had better start booking travel interstate for Geelong's away games, or get a subscription. It didn't take long for our Nation's politicians to seize on the opportunity for copy.
Little Johnny Howard noted it would be 'pretty tough' for those unfortunate enough to reside in South Australia or Western Australia, but reflected the deal "doesn't breach the anti-siphoning laws" and is a "commercial deal involving the AFL".
Little known Victorian Labor Senator Stephen Conroy, best known for becoming a father via a surrogate mother, weighed into the debate yesterday. "The loss of that extra game to pay TV means that every weekend there will be thousands of kids that won't get to see their team play. The AFL should explain how this could possibly be in the long-term interests of the game."
OFFICIAL GFC STATEMENT
Whilst every other recognised AFL powerhouse put out an official press release almost within minutes of the official announcement yesterday, the best the GFC could do was put our a token effort about the latest scratch match at Skilled Stadium. Pretty ordinary considering Geelong fans are left wondering if they're to carry the AFL's free to air 'blackout' Victorians now face.
For the record, the next intraclub game is on at 10am tomorrow (Saturday 10 February) at Skilled. Two sixteen a side teams will compete over four fifteen minute quarters. It is not yet clear if disgraced forward Steve Johnson will take his place in the 'possibles' side.
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