Setanta Sports Monopolizes U.S. TV Coverage of Premier League Title Race
In the race for the 2007/2008 Premier League title, Setanta Sports in North America is monopolizing the share of the key matches. This past Saturday morning, they showed the biggest match of the season between Chelsea and Manchester United. And now for this crucial upcoming weekend, Setanta Sports will be broadcasting both the early kickoff match between Manchester United and West Ham United (7:45am ET, May 3), and Monday’s afternoon kickoff between Newcastle and Chelsea (3pm ET, May 5).
What Setanta is doing is perfectly legitimate. Their agreement with Fox Soccer Channel ensures that the 7:45am Saturday morning kickoff and 3pm Monday matches are always shown on Setanta. But you have to wonder whether Fox Soccer Channel is kicking themselves for giving up the Monday 3pm ET slot to Setanta since the beginning of this season — especially if the title could be decided on that day if Man United beats West Ham and Chelsea drop points.
No word who will be televising what matches on the final day of the season, May 11. All matches on that date will be played at the same time. Last season, Fox Soccer Channel had the first pick when they decided to show Manchester United against West Ham.
When was the last time the Premier League title was decided on the last day of the season? At the end of the 1998/99 season when a Manchester United win against Tottenham was required to ensure that Arsenal didn’t beat United to the title. Man United beat Spurs 2-1 with goals from Andy Cole and David Beckham.