Singapore

Eleven to drop EPL next season

Fans of England's top football league left with only Singtel's pricing option

Britain-based online streaming provider Eleven Sports Network will be taking the English Premier League (EPL) off its menu from June 17.

The Straits Times understands that the Eleven Plus channel, which has been carrying EPL content, will also be removed from its suite of channels.

According to documents seen by ST, Eleven's popular $19.90-a-month package will be reduced to $9.90.

The new package will be renamed Eleven Sports Value Plan. The package will feature either MUTV or Chelsea TV in place of the EPL.

It will retain other existing sports content, including the Italian Serie A, Emirates FA Cup and NBA basketball, as well as European and South American Fifa World Cup qualifiers.

Subscribers will be given the option to convert to the new plan or cancel their subscription with a pro-rated refund.

ST understands that Eleven plans to notify customers of the programming change in an e-mail next week.

Eleven declined to comment when contacted, but its $19.90-a-month package was no longer on sale on its website on Friday.

The package allows users to watch three live EPL games and three delayed telecasts per week on its website at elevensports.sg or via the Eleven Sports app.

Users, however, have to commit to a year-long contract. Customers can also pay $24.90 a month without a contract.

Eleven's decision to drop EPL from its offerings means that EPL content will now be available on only one pricing option.

Singtel has had the exclusive EPL broadcast rights in Singapore for three seasons from last year, offering all the matches live for $59.90 a month.

StarHub cross-carries the exact offer on its pay-TV platform as the Singapore authorities require exclusive content to be shared.

Last year, Singtel sub-licensed parts of its exclusive rights to screen EPL matches here to Eleven, in what was reported as a multi-year deal.

For the first time in years, EPL matches could be sold in smaller a-la-carte packages at a much lower price.

Eleven's content is also resold by Internet service providers (ISPs) StarHub, M1 and ViewQwest, and national broadcaster Mediacorp's Toggle.

M1 and ViewQwest have stopped selling Eleven's selection of EPL matches. Meanwhile, StarHub and Toggle were still offering Eleven's EPL plan on Friday.

An M1 spokesman said: "We are clarifying with Eleven the changes they are making to their content offerings. Our priority is our customers' interests and we will update them when the details are finalised."

StarHub said: "We are currently in discussions with Eleven on its carriage of (EPL) content and will update our StarHub Go customers as soon as we can. We are unable to comment further due to confidentiality obligations."

ViewQwest chief executive Vignesa Moorthy said: "We are in discussion with Eleven to find out more about its future plans and hope that Singaporeans will still have plenty of options to continue watching their favourite sports."

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