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Pay-per-view and fan response to continue – for now

The Premier League is set to retain its pay-per-view (PPV) system for the next two rounds of games despite its unpopularity with supporters.

At a meeting this week Premier League clubs agreed to maintain the league’s PPV system in its current format and £14.95 pricing until after the next international break when it will be reviewed.

The Times reported that the average number of viewers of the first nine PPV games was 39,000. Some matches attracted fewer than 10,000 subscriptions, and none more than 100,000.

They said that average was calculated before the Brighton & Hove Albion v West Bromwich Albion game on Monday night, which is likely to have attracted fewer than 10,000 paid subscriptions.

While the PPV arrangements remain in place, supporters across the country have continued to donate their would-be match fees to local foodbanks and other causes. The amount donated to those foodbanks under the #CharityNotPPV campaign is likely to be near £500,000.

The joint Everton and Liverpool Fans Supporting Foodbanks initiative on Merseyside has raised £127,000 over the past week. Similarly, Newcastle United fans raised £60,000 for their foodbank while Leeds United passed more than £56,700 worth of donations. Other supporter groups across the Premier League similarly raised thousands of pounds for local causes.

FSA chair Malcolm Clarke said: “Our members have expressed the view that they want the ability to watch their teams legally while they remain locked out of games with the COVID-19 restrictions in place.

“However, by donating hundreds of thousands to local foodbanks instead of paying the £15 fee for pay-per-view over the past week, supporters have shown just how unpopular PPV is in its current format and pricing.

“It needs urgent reconsideration from the Premier League, clubs and broadcasters.”

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