Ukraine v England Broadcasting Online Only

For the first time ever in the UK an international football game will only be available online. The forthcoming Ukraine v England game will only be available to internet users and will not be shown on television. The unusual move comes following the collapse of Setanta TV, who had original deal to show the game. Following their collapse the Ukrainian Football Association agreed a deal with online TV streaming company Kentaro after traditional broadcasters refused to pay the fees requested. The result is that no television footage will be shown anywhere in the world, the only way to view Ukraine v England is to subscribe to it online for a fee.

The organisers have set up a special domain http://www.ukrainevengland.com/ where viewers can subscribe via Paypal or electronic payment methods. The cost of watching the game is £4.99 if viewers sign up before midnight on Wednesday Charges will rise to £9.99 for those who subscribe on Thursday and Friday, and £11.99 on Saturday.

The move to online is significant and testament to the rise in the online dominance, however by screening the game solely online, a large proportion of england fans could be potentially alienated and miss out on the game. Whilst it does offer a new opportunity for online streaming company’s, the quality of the streaming could be an issue, an official spokesperson for Kentaro advised that the company would only “take a maximum of one million subscribers for the match, to ensure an optimal output for streaming” This would equate to around 2.5 million viewers throughout the UK, considerably lower that what would be for traditional television.

The Ukraine V England game could mark the future of broadcasting of sport in UK, however, its success will be dependent on the success of this game and how it is accept by football fans.

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