Sky extends Football League rights as parachute payment deal is agreed

UK pay-television broadcaster Sky has agreed a one-year rights extension with the English Football League, which operates the three divisions below the top-tier Premier League, the League Cup and Johnstone’s Paint Trophy club knockout tournaments.

The new deal covers the 2018-19 season, with the league also having an option to extend the agreement for a further season, until 2019-20.

Sky will continue to show live coverage of 148 matches per season from the three divisions and the two knockout tournaments as well as highlights and clips from all of the competitions.

The deal covers television, broadband internet, on demand and mobile rights.

Additionally, the Football League has struck a new rolling ‘solidarity’ agreement with the Premier League that will lead to a portion of the latter’s media-rights revenues being re-distributed to Football League clubs from the 2016-17 season.

Under the agreement, so-called ‘parachute payments’ to relegated Premier League clubs will be reduced from the current four seasons to three seasons, with Championship clubs that are not in receipt of parachute payments being awarded a solidarity payment equivalent to 30 per cent of a third-year parachute payment. League 1 and League 2 clubs will receive 4.5 per cent and 3 per cent of a third-year payment, respectively.

Football League chief executive Shaun Harvey said: “The eventual level of parachute and solidarity payments made to Football League clubs from 2016-17 will only be known once the Premier League has concluded the sale of its overseas rights.”