Should Tranmere United's 3pm blackout be lifted?



Should Tranmere United’s 3pm blackout be lifted?

The Football Supporters Association are historically opposed to the blackout being lifted and chair Malcolm Clarke said earlier this season he saw “no reason to change it”. Tranmere chairman Mark Palios told i earlier this year that any lifting of the 3pm blackout would “absolutely” hit attendances at his club.

What is the 3pm blackout and why does it exist?

The 3pm blackout, which has been in place since the 1960s, prohibits matches being shown between 2:45pm and 5:15pm in order to protect attendances throughout the football pyramid. In Uefa territories, “Article 48” dictates that on a Saturday or Sunday, there must be a period when no live football can be shown on TV.

When will the 3pm blackout end in the Premier League?

On 3 April 2020, UEFA publically announced that the 3pm blackout was being lifted: “Uefa has lifted the ‘blocked hours’ protection granted to England and Scotland for the remainder of the 2019-20 season following requests from the relevant national associations as a result of measures taken in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Will the EFL scrap the 3pm Saturday blackout rule this summer?

The EFL will ask clubs if they want to scrap the 3pm Saturday blackout rule this summer. i understands the blackout will be discussed as an agenda item at the EFL’s AGM in June – with the league canvassing opinion from clubs about changing the rules to allow Saturday 3pm games to be shown over the iFollow service.