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Day of free Premier League coverage for Sky subscribers as battle lines drawn with BT

And the broadcasters have revamped their football schedule for the coming season.

Sky Sports' new line-up for their football coverage.
Sky Sports' new line-up for their football coverage.
Image: Sky Sports

SKY SPORTS WILL broadcast their first-ever free-to-air Premier League game on the first day of the new season.

Programmes from Sky Sports 1 will replace the regular programming on Sky 2 on Saturday, 17 August.

The move will be seen as an attempt to outflank new rivals BT Sport, who have pledged to spend almost €880m over three years and have sealed the rights to 38 live matches per season.

“It’s our biggest ever season of Premier League football and we’re inviting over one million Irish households  to enjoy the opening day,” says Sky Sports managing director Barney Francis.

Sky will this season add recently retired Liverpool legend, Jamie Carragher to their studio team and have revamped the schedule with a new Saturday evening game pencilled in.

“There’s so much to look forward to with the new football season including more live Premier League matches on Sky than ever before,” says expert, Jamie Redknapp. “This is a brilliant way for everyone to follow the action from first day of the Premier League season with Sky Sports.”

BT Sport pundits Austin Healey and Michael Owen were in Dublin this week to promote their coverage of rugby and football on the Setanta platform.

A BT spokesperson said today: “BT Sport is free every day of the season for BT broadband customers, not just free for one day.

“We are pleased to see that our arrival has prompted Sky to attempt to raise its game, but this stunt does not disguise the fact that this season they have fewer top pick matches.

“BT Sport customers will enjoy 38 live Barclays Premier League matches this season, including almost half of the top picks, so fans have a real choice of quality live sport on Saturdays for the first time in Premier League history. We think that means BT Sport is an essential part of the mix for sports fans.”

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