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9 Mar, 2022 10:13

Russian broadcaster responds after English Premier League pulls plug

The Premier League has suspended broadcasts in Russia in the wake of the conflict in Ukraine
Russian broadcaster responds after English Premier League pulls plug

Russian media company Okko has hit out at the English Premier League’s decision to suspend its contract to broadcast matches in Russia, saying the step is politically motivated.

The Premier League confirmed on Tuesday that it had “unanimously agreed” with its clubs to suspend its agreement with Okko, adding that the league would donate £1 million ($1.3 million) “to support the people of Ukraine”

But the step has been hammered by Okko, which issued a statement of its own accusing the Premier League of violating the terms of the deal.

“The English Premier League, in violation of the terms of the current contract, decided unilaterally to break off relations with Okko,” read a statement.

“This position is based solely on political motives. Okko, for its part, fulfilled all the conditions of the current contract. Okko regrets not being able to show English Premier League matches to Russian football fans.”

The Premier League follows in the footsteps of the French Ligue de Football Professional (LFP), which announced last week that it was suspending its contract with Match TV to broadcast Ligue 1 matches in Russia.

The fallout from Russia’s military offensive in Ukraine continues to spill over into sport as Russian athletes face sweeping sanctions.

Russian officials have condemned the actions of the likes of FIFA and UEFA as discriminatory, accusing them of allowing politics to dictate sport, unfairly impacting athletes and their livelihoods.