The EFL have negotiated a new £600million agreement for live domestic rights from 2019-20.
The deal, which sees Sky Sports exclusively broadcast the EFL, Carabao Cup, Checkatrade Trophy and Play-Offs through until May 2024, represents a 36 per cent year-on-year increase on the current deal.
Under the new agreement Sky Sports will broadcast in each season 150 EFL league games live, including 16 Championship games on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.
Currently, there are eight midweek match slots.
However, of most interest to fans of Championship clubs will be Sky’s offering to clubs the opportunity to live stream any league match that doesn’t take place on Saturday at 3pm.
That also sees Sky able to stream the same Championship fixtures to subscribers across their interactive and digital services, thus putting their midweek offerings – six of which are on the same night as the Champions League – in direct competition with BT Sport.
The other two are on nights when the Premier League is also in action, with BT Sport, rather than Sky, having the rights to show top-flight matches on those evenings.
BT Sport paid heavily above market value to lure Champions League coverage from Sky in 2014, before handing over almost £400million per year to keep the rights for a further three years – until 2021 – back in March.
Now Sky Sports hope to lure football watchers who don’t support sides’ at Europe’s top table away from BT Sport, by beefing up their domestic offering.
EFL Chief Executive Shaun Harvey said: “Sky Sports has for many years been a hugely important and valued partner of the EFL and we are delighted to extend our relationship by a further five years.
“These negotiations came at what was an incredibly challenging period in the sale and acquisition of sports rights in the UK and, having fully tested the market, we believe that not only has a significant increase in value for our Clubs been achieved, but also the very best deal, with the best partner has been delivered.
“In agreeing a deal over five seasons, it delivers a guaranteed increase in the level of income distributed to EFL Clubs from 2019/20 and long-term financial certainty was an absolute priority throughout this process.
“It is a partnership that as well as having mutual tangible benefits, allows the EFL to maximise reach and exposure for its competitions, alongside providing further opportunities for Clubs to generate additional incremental revenues through iFollow.
“The new opportunity for EFL Clubs to live-stream their matches through a direct to consumer service in the UK is a revolutionary and exciting step forward for football broadcasting rights in the UK and we will monitor its progress closely to determine how this model can be considered for future EFL rights cycles.”