Bradford City might not be on the BBC (again), but their next FA Cup match will still be available for everyone to watch on BT Sport.
The pay-TV broadcaster has confirmed that it will be making the quarter-final tie between Bradford and Reading free to view online and via Sky TV. The match kicks off on Saturday 7th March at 12:45pm, and is the first time Bradford City have made it this far in the Cup since 1976.
The BBC, meanwhile, will have live coverage of Aston Villa v West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, and Manchester United v Arsenal on Monday 9th March.
BT Sport will also be showing Liverpool v Blackburn Rovers on Sunday 8th March, for subscribers only.
The BBC has come under fire for its choice of televised FA Cup matches this season, with Bradford City fans taking to social media to criticise the decision to show Aston Villa v Leicester City instead of their fifth-round win against Premier League Sunderland.
The crowd chanted “Are you watching BBC?” during the win, and after the match Bradford chairman Mark Lawn said, “Whoever made the decisions at the BBC and BT Sport should hang their heads in shame. They all promote the FA Cup’s magic and romance, but where’s the magic gone now?”
The BBC countered by saying that it was obliged to choose which matches to show live before replays were decided, and so had to go on what appeared to be “the best fixtures, given all potential scenarios.”
However, the BBC has chosen not to show Bradford’s quarter final match, giving BT Sport the opportunity to cover the game.
Head of BT Sport Simon Green explained the decision to make the game free online: “This will be the second time that BT Sport has shown Bradford City in this year’s FA Cup and because Bradford Football club have been very passionate about the UK seeing their amazing club run, BT Sport have decided to make the game against Reading available to everyone to watch, online, via BT TV and Sky.”