BT continues Sky offensive with free football games for broadband customers

BT broadband customers will continue to receive free access to Premier League football matches on BT Sport, in a move which could draw away Sky subscribers.

The company announced in its full-year earnings report that it will continue to offer open access to the expensive fixtures for broadband customers in a strategy that could boost subscribers.

Although supplemented by substantial fixtures from European leagues, BT Sport also established a record deal with the Premier League paying £320m annually for the rights to broadcast 42 matches.

Gavin Paterson, BT chief executive said: “BT Sport standard definition is free. We haven't announced any plans going forward but we know how important it is to our customers."

During the 2013/14 season, BT Sport built a customer base of five million despite ardent competition from market-leading Sky.

As a result of BT’s growing influence, Sky was forced to dish out a record £1.39bn a season for the Premier League rights – an investment which may be partially responsible for the company’s £1 a month price hitch for the sports package (£47).

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