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BBC chief explains decision not to broadcast Bradford's 2-0 victory over Premier League side Sunderland

BBC Executive Mark Cole has explained the reasoning behind the broadcaster's decision not to show Bradford's FA Cup win over Sunderland.

The club, who beat Premier League leaders Chelsea in the last round at Stamford Bridge, were angered by the decision by both the BBC and Bt Sport not to show their home tie with Sunderland live on television.

For the lower league clubs left in the competition, the prospect of a home tie against a Premier League side being shown on television is a lucrative one, as fellow League One side Preston will find out when they take on Manchester United this evening.

But Bradford's clash with the Black Cats was omitted from the programming by both broadcasters, meaning the club missed out on a significant windfall.

However, given that they carried on their giant killing form and progressed to the quarter finals, they can now be guaranteed their quarter final will be televised by either the BBC or BT Sport.

Mark Cole, head of football for the BBC, explained the decision on the broadcaster's blog, stating the they had to make a decision based before the last round replays were played, meaning that they didn't know for sure that Sunderland would be Bradford's opponents.

"the hardest thing is that both the BBC and BT have to make our selections before the outcome of replays," he said.

"That's the only reason why Phil Parkinson's side didn't get a live match this time round. We had to weigh up the options and given Sunderland's recent form, thought it was a realistic possibility of the match being League One against a Championship side."

"If Bradford definitely had a home tie against Premier League opposition we certainly would have chosen to have the match live on BBC One. That has been a big part of our policy so far, showing AFC Wimbledon, Cambridge, Bristol City and tonight Preston, all looking to overcome opposition from the top flight."

"As the game unfolded yesterday at Valley Parade, we shared the frustration of fans and would have loved to have been broadcasting the match live. It's everything the FA Cup and our new comprehensive coverage is about."

"Despite some of the criticism coming out of Bradford, a lot of thought goes into the matches we pick, and I hope the selections outlined above show we are particularly keen to showcase clubs outside the Premier League. I'm a Bristol Rovers fan myself so know all too well what the cup can mean to those outside the elite."

You can read the full blog entry from Mark Cole here http://­www.­bbc.­co.­uk/­blogs/­aboutthebbc/­entries/­ca9f367e-40a9-4f38-abd0-655f46134cc1
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