Before the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons disappeared into the pandemic, the Trust ran a popular colour coded fixture list system that aimed to help supporters decide the risk of fixtures being moved for TV broadcast or other reasons. This isn’t an exact science, and relies heavily on limited information from the EFL and Sky, coupled with a detailed look at how TV slots have been filled with games from various leagues and also an eye on activities at the other teams in the borough.
When do broadcasters announce TV picks?
In previous seasons, the broadcasters provided a list of indicative dates by when each month’s TV fixture picks would be published, together with a “minimum notice commitment” that fixtures would not be moved inside a five week window. This notice period then dropped to a four week rolling notice period from March and three weeks for the penultimate weekend, the final weekend being fixed even without TV picks. These notice periods still seem to apply this season, but no indicative announcement dates have been provided.
It’s also worth bearing in mind that just because Sky makes its annoucement of “this month’s TV fixtures” it doesn’t necessarily mean that they can’t add more at a later date, although hopefully still adhering to the five week commitment.
Which TV slots do Sky use?
According to the EFL web site, the main TV slots used by Sky for EFL matches are
- Friday evenings at 7.45pm or 8.00pm
- Saturdays at 12.30pm
- Sundays at 12 noon
One key way to assess whether a fixture could still be at risk of moving is to check these slots to find out whether Sky has already made picks from the Championship or the Premier League or Scottish Premiership.
However, there is an all-important extra clause which says “within the Sky contract there are other kick-off times that are available to the broadcaster” so there is always a chance of different time slots being used, for example Saturday evening which we have already seen in the early part of the season.
What else can impact fixtures?
Other than TV, we have to be aware of fixture clashes with our nearest neighbours, particularly those organised by UEFA which take precedence. Later in the season, a run in the domestic Cups, either for Fulham or our Championship rivals, can also have an impact on domestic fixtures. We’ll keep an eye on this too.
Colour coding the fixture list
We have put together a simplified fixture list below based on an announcments so far and our assessment of the other factors discussed above. We classify fixtures as follows
- green – game should no longer be at risk of change *
- amber – be careful, game date could still be changed
- red – game date has changed
- grey – game completed.
The fixture list also explains the reason for the colour code of each match.
We will update this fixture list throughout the season and have also included useful information identifying international breaks and Cup weekends which could impact our fixtures even if we are out of the Cup.
* Please also do your own research, especially if you are committing to any expense, and let us know if you have any further insights.
This is a list of the most recent colour status changes. Please scroll down for the full colour coded fixture list.
Last update made Wednesday 24th November 2021
Birmingham (home) & Reading (away) now green as all TV slots allocated.
Sheffield United (home) and Swansea (away) moved for TV