Could the Premier League Launch its Own Streaming Service? Simon Jordan Thinks So

SIMON JORDAN: The Premier League can ditch Sky and BT, launch their own Netflix-style platform and give us all live football for £10 a month… it would be better for clubs AND fans to be free from being controlled by broadcasters

Rumours abound that the Premier League are contemplating building their own broadcast platform, which by definition would mean jettisoning established broadcast relationships and finally becoming captain of their own ship.

Despite the obvious benefits of not having to listen to Gary Neville, a legion of vacuous influencers and seemingly endless societal messages we have to endure from Sky, this represents the biggest breaking of eggs to make omelettes since the inception of the Premier League.

The cynical view is that this is simply a stalking horse ahead of negotiations for the next broadcast deals, but it bloody well shouldn’t be. Premier League executives need to set out their stall for what is a huge opportunity.

They need to back themselves, have confidence in their product and wake up to the fact that they don’t really need traditional broadcasters such as Sky or BT Sport any more.

Streaming via their own platform means the Premier League could be the Netflix of football.

Fans are used to listening to pundits like Gary Neville on Sky but the Premier League don't need the broadcasting giant any more
BT Sport can also be ditched if the Premier League set up their own Netflix-style platform
I believe the Premier League going out on their own would benefit clubs and supporters

Netflix built their business on other people’s content, put it on their platform and charged subscribers for it, whereas the Premier League are in the unique position that they are a proven model that has a global audience — and they own their content!

It might be simpler to continue with third-party distribution but if the Premier League launched their own platform it would be better for English football, clubs and fans. It requires innovation, application, motivation and ambition but those are meant to be the staple diet of the supposed best league in the world.

The Premier League need to be free from being controlled by broadcasters who are their paymasters and control their own destiny.

You don’t need conventional linear spaces to be able to broadcast from any more because, in the digital age, you can build platforms yourself. Digital is now a maturing marketplace, the quality is there, the proof of concept is there.

I can understand why there might be reticence because why mess with a guaranteed income stream? But all of this can be overcome and really wouldn’t be a voyage into the unknown.

I have long advocated for the Premier League to start rowing their own boat and if I still owned a football club I would be pushing for it in no uncertain terms. Every owner of a Premier League club who was not already a billionaire would quickly become one several times over.

Here is a chance to leverage the global marketplace to benefit us in this country as a result of this unique phenomenon. We have a tiger by the tail — the Premier League are bigger than any other league and launching their own broadcast platform would dwarf any other sport.

Yes, self-aggrandising NFL I’m looking at you. Vision, foresight and deliverables are necessities. Of course, it would require huge investment and infrastructure but give me a break if you don’t think that would be readily available and achievable.

There is this huge Tutankhamun-like crypt of gold ready to plunder but if the Premier League decide not to, it cannot be because they aren’t ambitious or confident enough. Current revenues are £2.9billion a year — equivalent to the Iron Man franchise. So Premier League revenues are currently like a movie of the week.

If the Premier League launched their own platform, they could have 100million subscribers, easily. If they then charged £10 a month for all-you-can-eat football they would be generating £1billion a month and £36bn over the three-year cycle — as opposed to the current £9bn — and that is even before you factor in advertising revenue.

Starting a Netflix-style platform would be better for the clubs in the Premier League
It would also be cheaper for fans, allowing them to watch defending champions Man City and all the other top-flight teams for just £10 a month

Commercially you would instantaneously remove churn from the marketplace because price resistance would be gone. In one fell swoop you would also eliminate the criminal side of society that is benefiting from piracy. All aspects of our football would benefit. Fans would pay dramatically less than the current bloated subscription prices and the pyramid and grassroots would significantly benefit.

The opportunities are phenomenal and the benefits beyond calculation. The Premier League isn’t a product that needs to be sold around the globe and pitch itself to people.

Domestic rights are now being outstripped by overseas rights, so you have not just got a proof of concept that you can market in your own country, you have also got a product you can market around the world and an existing, engaged audience.

It’s here, it’s now, they just have to go and grab it. Take advantage of the globalised world and demand for this product. It could be goodnight to traditional broadcasters who have done very well off the back of English football’s boom… but that’s progress.

You’re never too old to manage

Neil Warnock and Roy Hodgson have busted the myth that you’re too old to manage past a certain age.

Warnock, 74, went into Huddersfield when they were dead in the water and heading for the drop. Hodgson, 75, took the Palace job with the club on the brink of relegation.

Two old boys have shown the basic principles of football. Get people in who are effective at communicating with athletes and put square pegs in square holes. Neither side are safe yet but their prospects look far better.

If you’re good enough, you’re young enough.

The idea that Chelsea have to wait for Luis Enrique or Julian Nagelsmann to decide if they want to become their manager is ridiculous.

The club should have gone out and got the manager they wanted already. Chelsea have all the economic might in the world — use it.

Nagelsmann could come in and understand the dynamics of the dressing room, work out who he does and doesn’t want. He could have learned on the job and had a free hit for the rest of this season.

So why wouldn’t you wield the influence and economic might at your disposal to get a manager in now?

Todd Boehly waiting until the summer to appoint Chelsea's next permanent manager is bizarre

Chelsea have ignored every other rule, every other myth around what you can and can’t do, so get your man and put yourself in a better position going into next season.

If the reason Nagelsmann or Luis Enrique don’t want the job now is because they don’t want to risk their reputation being damaged by someone else’s work, then give them incentive. Stop messing around. Get your man in now and build.

They started this forest fire by buying the club for £2.5billion and spending £600million on new players. Yet all of a sudden they are going down the formulaic, lazy, populist, fan-appeasing route of putting Frank Lampard back in place. It’s hardly progressive!

Sometimes in football you get stitched up, as Leeds are discovering now having been ordered to pay former striker Jean-Kevin Augustin £24.5million for breach of contract.

Unfortunately for Leeds, they appear to be the architects of their own downfall having seemingly signed a contract with the player prior to the event.

Quite how Leeds have got themselves in this mess with bills to the selling club, liabilities for an ongoing contract and no transfer fee, perhaps illustrates the banana republic of football finances and has the whiff of the Peter Ridsdale regime of years gone by.

It reminds me a little of a situation I had at Crystal Palace six weeks after I walked in the door regarding the Australian midfielder Craig Foster. He was on a three-year contract worth £500,000 a season but had to get his work permit renewed every year.

Leeds must take responsibility for the mess surrounding Jean-Kevin Augustin

At the end of his first season, his work permit was rejected and I was ordered by the Football League to pay up his contract. The law of the land dictated that he couldn’t play and yet I was being told to pay the player £1m.

It was only when I said I would take them kicking and screaming to every court in the land if they made me pay that they backed down.

Even then I was told I had to pay his £100,000 signing-on fee. I was ready to go to war again before my lawyer told me to quit while I was ahead. I’d won the battle.

Painfully for Leeds, they have lost theirs.

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