Championship outfit Leeds United have “reluctantly” ended a stand-off with broadcasters Sky and will allow the company to broadcast their match against Derby County on Tuesday.
Leeds are among the clubs to be shown most regularly on television this season and they were asked by the Football League on Monday for their observations on the situation after owner Massimo Cellino claimed attendances were being negatively affected.
After negotiations with the Football League, who had threatened sanctions, the club have opted to allow the cameras into Elland Road having initially denied them entry.
But Leeds insist it is the League – and not them – who bring the competition into disrepute and accuse the competition organisers of ruining their supporters’ Christmas period.
“Leeds United have reluctantly allowed Sky cameras into Elland Road to broadcast tonight’s fixture against Derby County,” read the club’s statement.
“Leeds United have noted that the majority of press reports on the matter have quite rightly appreciated that the club’s issues with the Football League relate in part to the entirely disproportionate number of times Sky have selected the club for live transmission.
“It is not just the number of times the club has been selected, but the fact the adjoining fixtures are also then disrupted which adversely affects the players, the club’s logistical arrangements and the fans’ arrangements. It is clear to the club that its key supporters, the season ticket holders, have also had enough of this constant alteration, often at short notice, to the fixture list to accommodate Sky.
“Recent good results have been achieved despite the alterations to the fixture list, but at great cost to the players’ fitness and a substantial injury list.
“The festive plans of supporters have also been entirely ruined by Sky’s live TV selections.
“Leeds United season ticket holders have had enough of these fixture changes, the players and staff have had enough, and Leeds United has had enough.
“It is to be noted that the League threaten a disrepute charge against the club. It is the League who are bringing their own competition into disrepute by unfairly prejudicing Leeds (and certain other clubs) by allowing Sky to unfairly disrupt Leeds United for their own commercial purposes.”
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