Amazon Prime Video has announced plans to show UEFA Champions League coverage from next season (2023/24) and fans have started to question the landscape of football streaming in the UK.
Football fans face many issues and pay-per-view and streaming websites are some of the biggest.
To put it simply it is too costly and too complicated to watch football.
Hamada Omer a second year Kingston Student said: “It’s way too expensive to watch football. It just makes it difficult for fans to watch their teams, I’m not surprised that so many people illegally stream football nowadays.”
In a survey conducted by Statista Global Consumer Survey of fans in 2021, 40% of fans in the UK felt that it was too expensive to watch football coverage.
Abroad, in nations like India, the price of watching football is as low as £9 per year with a centralised service that provides fans with all the Premier League football coverage for the season.
In the UK however, it is much more difficult. There is no centralised service providing all the live games, so that means that fans must pay for Sky Sports, BT and Prime Video for almost all the coverage that season.
That amounts to over £70 per month to watch most games played in just the English Premier League.
Omer said: “Football shouldn’t be something we have to pay so much for, especially in a cost of living crisis, it should be affordable and accessible to all fans, platforms like Amazon Prime are an example for the other British television companies.”
Is Amazon the answer?
In the summer of 2019, it was announced that online streaming giant Amazon Prime Video had bought the rights to several Premier League matches for that upcoming season.
Prime Video provides an efficient and affordable price for fans and gives them all the games that Amazon has acquired the rights to for no added charge.
Its introduction into English football was another move away from traditional television viewing as online subscriptions and streaming entered the picture.
Prime Video’s subscription costs £9 per month, £4.49 per month for students, in comparison to Sky Sports which costs over £40 per month and BT Sport costing over £25 per month, figures that definitely do not favour the average working class fan, especially during a cost of living crisis.
Being the newest addition to the Premier League viewing landscape in the UK, Prime Video only owns the rights to around 20 matches per season but fans are hoping they can acquire more.
Streaming services like Prime Video are undoubtedly the future of football, in a time where people have to prioritise buying groceries, football will continue to lose its importance and its support without change.