What is the "black-out" rule in football and is it lawful?
Article 48 of the UEFA Statutes, otherwise known as the “black-out rule”, exists to protect football fans and players from the effect of competing with live coverage of football games. The rule has been subject of much debate 1 since it was introduced, and it has been brought into focus again by over-the-top streaming service Eleven Sports (Eleven).
So what exactly does the regulation state and why is it in place? And does the rule still have a place in the modern game, or is the rule vulnerable to a challenge under competition law? This article examines:
The legal basis of the rule, and the reasons for its introduction;
Eleven’s arguments against the rule;
Previous legal challenges and reviews of the rule; and
The likely outcome of a future competition law challenge of the rule.
Get access to this article and all of the expert analysis and commentary at LawInSport
Already a member?
Articles, webinars, conference videos and podcast transcripts
This work was written for and first published on LawInSport.com (unless otherwise stated) and the copyright is owned by LawInSport Ltd. Permission is granted to make digital or hard copies of this work (or part, or abstracts, of it) for personal use provided copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage, and provided that all copies bear this notice and full citation on the first page (which should include the URL, company name (LawInSport), article title, author name, date of the publication and date of use) of any copies made. Copyright for components of this work owned by parties other than LawInSport must be honoured.
- Tags: Broadcasting | Competition Law | English Premier League (EPL) | Europe | European Court of Justice (ECJ) | Football | Football League (EFL) | The FA | UEFA | UEFA Regulations governing the implementation of Article 48 | UEFA Statutes | UK