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Championship clubs 'gravely concerned' over new five-year TV deal

A unnamed group of Championship clubs are "gravely concerned" by the new five-year broadcasting rights deal signed by the English Football League (EFL), according to a statement released on Tuesday. 

The EFL, which includes the second-tier Championship and lower two divisions, agreed the deal with Sky Sports on Monday and is worth £595 million, a 35 percent increase on the current arrangement. 

But several clubs have been left frustrated after their efforts to discuss the terms of the deal during the decision-making process were neglected.

"Championship clubs are gravely concerned that the EFL board has announced it has approved a new long-term domestic broadcasting rights deal," the statement read.

"19 clubs from the league wrote to the EFL asking them not to sign the proposed deal and to engage in meaningful discussions. This was ignored.

"The clubs discovered that in the space of 15 months, without our knowledge, material changes had been made to this draft agreement. When the EFL board presented the new version of the deal -- it gave more games and rights for less money and damaged the ability of clubs to control the decision to stream games and its pricing.

"Our issues are not with Sky, who we respect and value, but with the way in which the proposed agreement has been negotiated and explained to clubs.

"We remain convinced that any solution to the broadcasting of EFL competitions can only be on the basis of protecting attendances and securing the financial position of all our 72 clubs.

"There is a calm determination within Championship clubs to ensure the matter is not left here."

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