Anorak News | Beheaders & Volleys

Beheaders & Volleys

by | 23rd, August 2006

ONLY the few can have failed to notice that the football season is upon us once more.

And the few are those without access to Sky television on which the Premier League’s gilded games are broadcast LIVE!. For these poor souls, football is either something you actually play, stand in the freezing cold to watch or listen to on the transistor radio.

Or they can always go to the pub and watch the game on the big screen. And now footy fans in Portsmouth can get their coverage courtesy of Al-Jazeera, the Arabic broadcasting company.

Whereas Sky charges pubs £6,000 a year to broadcast their coverage, signing up to Al-Jazeera cost just £300 for the same period.

Sky is delighted. A spokesman for the media giant says that football is the national game and should be cheap and accessible at the point of entry. Or not. What Sky spokesman Dan Johnson actually tells the Mirror is: “This is illegal…Purchasing from Arabic television is copyright theft.”

While British punters work out how Al-Jazeera can sell football at such a discount, we tune in to the show, as broadcast in one of five pubs in Portsmouth.

And, as Derek Hopper, of the city’s Royal Exchange tavern, says, if you turn down the volume the punters don’t mind.

Although the occasional breaks in transmission to broadcast footage of men in hoods lopping the heads off rival fans can be distracting.

But nothing the physiotherapist’s magic sponge cannot clean up…

Posted: 23rd, August 2006 | In: Back pages Comment | TrackBack | Permalink