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Sky Sports named preferred bidder by EFL

Sky Sports look set to retain the TV rights to English Football League (EFL) after they were announced as the preferred bidder.

Media reports had suggested streaming platform DAZN wanted to show every game live, ending the Saturday 3pm blackout.

The EFL said it had completed a "full and comprehensive review" of invitation to tender bids.

It added it would now enter into an exclusive month-long negotiating period with Sky.

The previous five-year broadcast deal, worth £595m, was signed in 2018 and allows Sky to show at least 138 league matches a season as well as every play-off game and the Carabao Cup final.

The broadcaster also screens matches in the earlier rounds of the EFL Cup and the semi-finals and final of the EFL Trophy.

The TV blackout for Saturday 3pm kick-offs in the UK dates back to the 1960s and was designed to protect lower-league attendances.

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