FA considering lifting 3pm Saturday TV blackout for FA Cup to increase revenue and attract streaming giants. The blackout rule, which has been in place since the 1960s to protect attendances, is under increasing strain in recent years. The Premier League remains in favor of keeping their matches off television on Saturday afternoons, while the EFL is yet to make a decision despite inviting broadcasters to bid for 3pm kick-offs in their TV rights auction. However, the FA believes that lifting the blackout would generate higher revenue for clubs and the grassroots game. Negotiations with broadcasters will begin this summer for the next rights cycle beginning in 2025-26, and the removal of the blackout is expected to invite bids from both traditional broadcasters and streaming services, increasing the price. The FA Cup is hamstrung by the same blackout rules at 3pm on a Saturday as the leagues, and lifting the blackout would lead to increases in prize and appearance money for lower division clubs.
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