In a move that could mark a significant shift in the Premier League's scheduling, top officials are contemplating the possibility of staging a match on Christmas Eve for the first time in almost three decades.
The game under consideration is Chelsea's visit to Wolverhampton Wanderers, which was initially slated for December 23.
Sky Sports, the UK's leading sports broadcaster, is understood to be the driving force behind this proposal. The network is reportedly keen on including a match on Christmas Eve as part of their festive television package for fans.
If the plan goes ahead, it would be the first time a top-tier game has been played on December 24 since Leeds United's 3-1 victory over Manchester United at Elland Road in 1995.
Fan backlash and police concerns
However, the proposal has already sparked a backlash from both Chelsea and Wolves supporters. Chelsea fans, in particular, are disgruntled following the club's recent decision to end the subsidy for fans travelling to away matches.
In addition to the fans' discontent, there are also concerns from the West Midlands Police. They anticipate that their resources will be stretched thin on a night when they are tasked with patrolling the streets and ensuring the safety of Christmas Eve revellers.
Premier League bosses were expected to announce the full list of December and January fixture switches on Friday. However, only seven matches moved from the 3pm Saturday slot on December 2 were announced.
The Premier League has since stated that the remaining December and January fixtures will be announced early next week.
The Premier League's decision to consider a Christmas Eve match represents a significant departure from tradition. However, it remains to be seen whether the potential benefits, such as increased TV viewership, will outweigh the concerns of fans and local authorities.
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