Portsmouth chief welcomes new Football League television deal

Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin has welcomed the new television deal for Football League clubs. Picture: Joe Pepler
Pompey chief executive Mark Catlin has welcomed the new television deal for Football League clubs. Picture: Joe Pepler
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Mark Catlin has backed a new Sky Sports television rights deal worth £595m.

The Football League agreement, which runs from the start of next season until May 2024, is a 35-per-cent increase on the previous contract.

It ensures 138 league matches will be broadcast every season, in addition to divisional play-offs.

In terms of the Championship, the arrangement includes 16 fixtures on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, with a further eight to be broadcast simultaneously.

Furthermore, 14 ties from earlier rounds of the Carabao Cup will be shown, along with Checkatrade Trophy semi-finals and final.

A number of Championship clubs, including Derby, Aston Villa and Leeds, are unhappy over the deal, insisting they warrant a greater slice.

Catlin, though, recognises an important leap in income for Pompey – irrespective of what division they will next season appear in.

The Blues’ chief executive said: ‘This is a deal Shaun Harvey and his commercial team have been negotiating for quite a long while.

‘They employed a team of professional media experts to work with them and it was a decision received warmly by the majority of EFL clubs.

‘As a group of 72 football clubs, we are a collective, I have always abided by any decision the majority of the clubs take.

‘There were a majority of clubs which thought this was a good deal for the EFL generally.

‘It’s a 35-per-cent increase and now gives clubs security for the next five years in how they budget their income revenues.

‘For the majority of clubs this is good news and, as ever, the amount of revenue you get increases depending on what league you are in.’

Pompey are presently top of League One after 17 matches.

That superb start to the league campaign has put them in pole position for a return to the Championship next season.

Should that goal be achieved, they can naturally anticipate receiving a greater proportion of the new television deal.

As a consequence, Pompey fans can expect more fixtures to be moved to fulfil television demands.