BCFC: More Fixture Changes

14 Oct 2022 | 9 comments

St Andrews

Blues Trust is dismayed to learn that yet another fixture has been moved to accommodate Sky Sports. The club announced yesterday (Thursday 13 October) that the home match against Reading, originally planned for Saturday 17 December, has been rescheduled for Friday 16 December with an 8pm kick off.

This follows on closely from the rescheduling of the upcoming fixtures against QPR and Sunderland, both moved from Saturday afternoons to the Friday night before and both to satisfy the demands of Sky Sports. Taking into account the opening home game of the season against Huddersfield Town, that is now four home fixtures that have been moved so far this season.

What it means is that Blues will not now play a Saturday afternoon league match at home until Preston North End visit St. Andrew’s on 21 January 2023. A total of 15 weeks since last Saturday’s match against Bristol City.

Of course, the intervention of the World Cup throughout November and December has made this season unusual. And the 15-week period also includes the Christmas and New Year period, when Blues are currently due to be at home on a Thursday and a Sunday because of public holidays.

But 15 weeks is a significant period of time for supporters to have to wait to see their team play at home on a Saturday afternoon, still the traditional time for football matches in this country even though the Trust acknowledges that this tradition is slowly but surely being eroded. Night games can throw up many challenges for supporters, and particularly so season ticket holders who may have made a decision to purchase a ticket on the reasonable assumption that most football at St. Andrew’s was likely to be experienced on a Saturday afternoon. Night games, even with a period of notice, can be difficult for many supporters especially those that work and those with young children and other family or carer commitments. And they can also be difficult for supporters who travel from afar to watch the Blues, and not least in the middle of winter.

Of course, the money paid by Sky Sports is important given the nature of the modern game. And, given its financial contribution, it is understood that Sky should have some influence over which fixtures are shown. But the frequent and excessive rescheduling of matches in this way demonstrates, once again, the disregard…perhaps even contempt…that clubs have for those supporters who regularly attend home games. Blues Trust is in the process of contacting the club to share our frustrations about these fixture changes and to seek its view on the matter.

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  1. Keith

    Living in Manchester I struggle to get to night games. No trains back so either hotel or driving on M6 in the dark when I’m tired is not a good option

    • Pete C

      Same here, travelling from Liverpool. I get to the occasional night game but it’s not much fun driving on the car park that is the M6 in the dark. Not sure the club has any say in it though. Typical Sky arrogance. They believe that football started with the invention of the Premiership, or whatever it’s called this year.

  2. Very Annoyed

    Thank you Blues Trust for highlighting this issue. Living as I do in Herefordshire, I usually have to travel to matches by train but I’m in the position of not being able to go to night games because there are no return journey trains after 9pm and so I can’t get back home. Therefore, my season ticket is wasted. If Sky or BCFC are re-arranging games to suit TV coverage then it should be incumbent on both Sky or Blues to compensate by offering a free TV access to season ticket holders who have already paid for their ticket. Of course, this also applies to other Blues supporters who may have already paid for a Saturday match day ticket.

    • Alfred Lyons

      Alfred Lyons
      I noticed these evening games coming and spoke to Linda Magner about it.
      It was discussed in your recent meeting.
      Would like to point out to you about the home games that get on to Blues Iplayer.
      Why do the season ticket holders have to pay the £10, as they have already paid.
      So Blues do not play a game at home at 3pm until next year.
      That is so unfair especially for the oldy fans like myself who prefer the day time games.
      Don’t Blues have any say in this at all.

  3. tracey tyler

    I agree it’s a disgrace that the majority of our games are now midweek so its a little ironic that the EFL want all 3pm kick offs to be open to aired on TV and other outlets from 2024.I am afraid that although Sky and BT have bought a lot of money into the game they have little thought for fans travelling to matches,imagine the Sunderland fans travelling down to St Andrews for the 28th of October match with us at 8pm ??? It’s a ridiculous situation.I am under the view that when contracts are drawn up with Broadcasting companies that a certain percentage of matches should be guaranteed a 3pm kick off and that the 3pm matches that the EFL want to go to air from 2924 should be scrapped and that the Premier League should share more of their wealth to the EFL.

    • tracey tyler

      Sorry the Sunderland match is 17th November,QPR are the 28th October.

  4. Ed Truman

    Spot on Blues Trust. I’m thoroughly fed up with these fixture changes. My journey to St Andrew’s is 70 miles and it is not much fun at the best of times, let alone at night in winter. I have to be lucky to get home before midnight.

    I have always enjoyed a home match under the lights. The atmosphere is special. But not every other week!

    If this points the way ahead, I’ll be seriously considering whether or not to renew my season ticket in the future.

  5. Mitchell Bray

    Unfortunately that’s how the modern football is decided. Fitting fixtures in and just getting through the program never really takes into consideration of the supporters. lower profile league fixtures especially Northern Ireland ( where I have been this week) appear much more concerned about fans and their finances.

  6. Sausage n Egg

    Sky are too influential in football..it’s what happens when you take the devils gold

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