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TV giant NBC wants Premier League games played in US

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American TV giant NBC wants Premier League games to be played in the United States on the opening weekend of the season amid a renewed bid to take top-flight matches outside of England.

NBC is the Premier League’s American broadcast partner and its latest TV deal with the English top-flight, worth £2bn across six seasons, is the largest outside of the UK.

The Premier League’s chief executive Richard Masters said last week that the “door looks ajar” to fixtures being played in America, although there are no plans to do so currently.

That was after Fifa dropped legal action against LaLiga, following the Spanish top-flight’s bid to stage a game between Barcelona and Girona in Miami back in 2018.

The Premier League previously tried to take fixtures aboard in 2008 – in the so-called ‘39th game’ – but plans were shelved following a backlash from fans and opposition from Fifa.

But the opposition from football’s governing body appears to be softening and now a senior executive at NBC Sports, which first acquired Premier League broadcasting rights in 2013, has said that there will be a renewed “push” to stage fixtures in the US.

“At some point in the future, I would love to see a couple of Premier League games open the season here in big stadiums on our opening weekend,” Jon Miller, NBC Sports’ president of acquisitions and partnerships, toldThe Athletic.

“And I know that’s something that we’ll continue to push for because I think that there’s an American audience here that would like to see regular season games.

“But in the meantime, we’ll continue to work with the Premier League to do everything we can to make the games available to as many people as possible.”

The Football Supporters Association reacted strongly to the comments, and posted a statement on Twitter/X: “We defeated Game 39 in 2008 and we’d attack any attempted revival with a full blown, two feet off the ground, studs to the knee tackle.”

The president of Spain’s LaLiga, Javier Tebas, has said the Spanish top-fight could play competitive games in the United States as soon as the 2025-26 season.

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