Cost of living and increased ticket prices are forcing more people to illegally stream football matches

Amid the cost-of-living crisis, there is no wonder more people are being tempted into illegal streaming.

Four police raids took part in March, as Stoke, Manchester, Edinburgh and London saw their hotspots for illegal streaming services targeted.

The use of Internet Protocol TV (IPTV) has skyrocketed in recent years, with an estimated 50,000 devices in the UK using the application.

For over a decade costs of going to football matches in person have grown exponentially with match tickets seeing a 3.45% price increase, with the average price of a club’s cheapest season ticket in the Premier League now being £321.20. Add in travel and matchday concessions a season of following football is around £500.

More fans are ditching stadiums to watch matches on TV. With the 3pm blackout still in effect, supporting a club that is not on TV, mainly in the lower leagues is impossible this way. If you are of the Arsenal, Manchester City or Liverpool persuasion, then you’re in luck. All you must do is sell your soul to some of the biggest broadcasting corporations, making a rent sized dent in your account each month.

To be subscribed to Sky Sports, BT Sport and now Amazon Prime, you will be forking out £75 a month, in hopes that your team will feature on their channel. £750 a season to get low standard punditry from ex-professionals on matches they have no clue about.

Having your team play in front of the Sky cameras is a hassle for most lower league fans, but for top tier sides like Arsenal, with millions of fans and sat top of the Premier League, having their match moved to Sunday lunchtime is a given, so tell me why they are not being shown on TV.

Don’t get me started on the international break. For years it was Sky and BT fighting it out, now you must add in Amazon Prime if you want midweek games, and something called ViaPlay for international matches. Many Scottish fans missed their nation’s biggest win of a generation in March, their 2-0 win over Spain was only shown on ViaPlay. Those strong-willed souls missed the match, not playing the same premium price to watch the Scots play Spain as they would do for their matches against Cyprus and Georgia.

There’s no wonder people are turning to the dark side. Broadcasting prices are ripping off working class people whereas a year’s subscription to IPTV sets you back just £50. With the package giving you access to all Sky, BT and Amazon channels, as well as every channel abroad. This allows you to watch every game, from every team, in every league.

The rise of such devises opens the question about football’s pricing all together. Those in a certain position will force you to understand their moral choice of bending the law to save £600 at a time like this.

Many sports would not have survived if these happenings started in 1992, but with the industry now worth over £55 billion, there has been a clear shift in peoples lack of sympathies to the big broadcasters.

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