It's not all about money: the domination of English clubs on French and even European football is also linked to a culture of football, preserved by a little-known rule.
England likes to maintain its particularities: like Boxing Day, the famous Boxing Day where Christmas is celebrated. The Premier League is the only European championship to be played offer matches, other traditions make the prestige of British football. One of them is even fundamental to understanding the domination of English clubs over European football: the "3pm blackout" (the "3 p.m. cutoff").
The origin of this rule dates back to At the end of the 1950s, when the English football authorities decided to take action. to set up a period of "blackout" for matches. This rule prohibits television broadcasts of matches between 2:45 p.m. and 5:15 p.m. on Saturday. Thus, the matches which start on Saturday at 3pm is never broadcast live in the UK. Between two and five high-level matches are affected each weekend, but also all foreign matches which take place during this slot!
This tradition, which nevertheless reduces the TV rights that English clubs could receive, is in reality a boon for image and health The primary objective is to ensure that fans go to the stadium rather than watching matches at home. television and this ensures superb atmospheres and full stadiums – including in winter.
The financial repercussions are in reality enormous, particularly in terms of ticketing. The spectacular atmosphere of the English championship also ensures increased TV rights to the public. abroad. Another positive consequence of this rule is the strengthening of amateur football and the lower divisions. By offering a dedicated time slot At afternoon matches, small local clubs attract a larger audience, thus promoting the development of football culture.
The clubs of Football League One, the third English division, welcome on average 10,611 spectators per match, almost five times more than the National, the third French division (2,240 spectators on average). The gap is even greater and greater going down the divisions: Football League Two (4th division) welcomes 5,712 spectators on average per match, compared to 5,712 spectators per match. barely more than 500 in National 2 (4th French division). Even if this "blackout" is not the only reason for these dizzying differences, it partly explains the unequaled attendances of small English clubs compared to the big ones. France but also abroad; other countries.
This tradition, although ancient, has remained firmly anchored in the football culture in England and also strengthens social cohesion, solidarity and solidarity. and neighborhood life. Despite the rise of television, streaming and growing demand for flexible time slots for matches, clubs English football players continue to respect this "blackout" from Saturday to 3 p.m.
This tradition is not without controversy in the United Kingdom, however. Some believe that the "blackout" à 3 p.m. on Saturday afternoon is obsolete and broadcasters should be allowed to do so. broadcast these matches, to increase revenue from TV rights. The rule was thus recently relaxed for some Premier League matches.