Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Premier Sports television deal to air the Blue Square Premier is now well under way.

There's been four live games so far and it's been pretty enjoyable stuff for a fan of the non league scene like myself. Also, as a Dons fan and Trust member, it's been great to see two AFC Wimbledon games live, including tonight's cracker at home to big spenders Crawley Town.

The deal hasn't been without it's teething problems. There's been a number of fans upset at a multitude of things including the choice of games and teams shown, the fact that the channel is only available on the Sky platform, but mostly because of the short notice at moving games to midweek nights, disrupting many pre booked travel plans.

Wimbledon were fantastic in putting on free coaches to Luton for their rearranged game last Friday. Fans of other clubs haven't been so lucky. With the late signing of the deal, this disruption has been pretty much unavoidable and with the announcement of the schedule up to the end of 2010 now, hopefully fans can now get their travel all booked up in advance to secure the best deals.

I was pleased that they didn't move the Wimbledon-Luton game at Kingsmeadow on November 30th, as I'd booked part of my trip home around that game and couldn't have made any rearranged date.

For the hardcore fans that have found themselves out of pocket, they are rightly pissed off and it's hard for them to see exactly how much the League will benefit from the exposure. It's great for exiles like myself, but we're not the ones that should really matter at the end of the day.

Tonight's game was great entertainment in the second half, with Wimbledon pressing hard to overturn a 1-0 half time deficit. I took the day off work to watch it and was jumping around my living room at the two late goals that saw Wimbledon take the three points and jump back to the top of the Blue Square Premier table.

The win knocked Crawley off the top and thankfully so. They have adopted an "everyone hates us attitude" this season and they're right to do so, as everyone does. It's not even just the big bucks they're spending. Their management team and fans are a pretty obnoxious bunch. It would be delightful to see them fail this season.

It's maybe not as slick football as you'll find in the Premier, but it's great to see it back on our television screens. The deal and the channel may still have some kinks to iron out but their gameday coverage has been on the whole excellent.

As a lower level football fan, give me this any day over the Champions League.

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