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WatchLOI returns for 2021, Women's National League to be streamed live


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The FAI has confirmed its most wide-ranging broadcasting arrangement for the domestic leagues. 

The WatchLOI service is to return, streaming matches to fans locked out of grounds by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A new deal has been agreed with RTÈ Sport to broadcast first-choice matches on Friday nights.

One of the main criticisms of last season's WatchLOI offering has been addressed. A new platform called LOITV will stream all SSE Airtricity First Division matches for the season.

Allied to that, the SSE Airtricity Women's National League is to be streamed live and free-of-charge on the LOITV platform.

RTE Sport will cover the production costs for WatchLOI with all profits from the platform set to go straight to the Premier Division clubs.

All parties will hope for a better uptake of the service this season.

Approximately 11,000 people subscribed to WatchLOI, far below what had been hoped.

Speaking earlier this month, former FAI interim deputy CEO Niall Quinn said, "They said 6,000 season ticket holders got it for free so it served a purpose.

“It meant that clubs didn't have to send cheques back because having to refund money would have been tough.

“You would love everyone abroad with an Irish connection to be tapped but we just couldn't get into that.

“There was a nice connection there in the pandemic that didn't go far enough and pity about that, but it was half-decent while it lasted.”

Bohemians COO Daniel Lambert tweeted his support of the new deal, saying, "Well done to the FAI league staff on the streaming/tv packages - lots of positive change at the association - clubs met earlier today before the announcement to discuss.

"Huge potential in LOI & it feels like we’re finally on the right road albeit with a long journey ahead."

Pricing for WatchLOI Premier Division and LOITV First Division and details for season ticket holders will be announced in due course.

For more of these stories, visit otbsports.com.

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First Division League Of Ireland SSE Airtricity First Division SSE Airtricity Premier Division SSE Airtricity Women's National League Streaming WatchLOI Women's National League

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