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More than 5m UK football fans admit to illegal streaming

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A new study has shown that despite 40% of football fans knowing that unofficial internet streams are illegal, around 5 million fans up and down the country are still using them to access the sport on a regular basis.

Despite the Premier League’s best efforts to clamp down on illegal streaming, the survey of 1,000 UK football fans shows that 42% are unaware that using online catch-up services to catch up on a match is illegal.

The research highlights that football fans in London are the worst culprits, as 58% of men in the capital admit to using illegal streams. A staggering 40% of football fans residing in London have also skipped work to watch football.

A whopping 68% admit to using somebody else’s login on a device to watch a match, with almost one in 10 (8.8%) doing so on a regular basis.

The interactive Fans of the EPL report, published by OLBG, has exposed the lengths people will go to to watch live matches in the Premier League whether legally or illegally with a survey of 1,000 people showing the true viewing habits of British football fans and the trends in attendances since in the post-War era.

Almost half (48%) of football fans in the UK now watch football at home, and more than a third access football whilst at the pub. Women would also much prefer to watch football at the pub than men (20% vs 16.4%).

31.2% of females also rely on social media sites such as Twitter and Instagram for breaking news and updates, compared to 27.5% of men.

Fans of the EPL, published by OLBG, has exposed the lengths people will go to to watch live matches in the Premier League whether legally or illegally with a survey of 1,000 people showing the true viewing habits of British football fans and the trends in attendances since in the post-War era.

Speaking exclusively to Fans of the EPL/OLBG, Premier League Executive Director Bill Bush has claimed that piracy is threatening the integrity of the game.

He said: “This shadowy world of data piracy drains money away from the sport and threatens the integrity of the game. The Premier League is a successful competition that depends on audio-visual rights for the investment that keeps standards high and fans happy.  We will always protect our rights to defend ourselves from piracy in any form, whether in broadcast or data rights.”

The Premier League has every right to be worried about breaches of their intellectual property, with almost 40% of respondents unaware that using an unofficial online internet stream to watch a live game of football is illegal, while more than half (55%) did not know it was illegal to watch live matches online without a TV licence.

For further information on the true price of TV in the Premier League and a complete breakdown of how much money each team could win/lose if money was equally distributed between teams or how much each team averages per season, visit Fans of the EPL, where you will find the best and most comprehensive guide to TV fixtures between now and January in the Premier League.

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Paul Skeldon

Editor and content creator for Telemedia – for 18 years and counting

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