SAFC would like to take this opportunity to clarify the circumstances behind the movement of the Fulham game by the Football League (EFL) and Sky.
Firstly, we wholeheartedly sympathise with the issues the late change to this game has caused our supporters. Under normal circumstances, the EFL states that at a minimum five-week notice period must be given when games are selected for live broadcast. However, it was the view of the EFL and the Sky that given the significance of the matches taking place on the penultimate weekend, it would not be in the interests of the competition to broadcast matches that have no impact on the outstanding issues of the season. They therefore amended their policy from a five-week to a three-week notice period for the TV slots scheduled for 7.45pm on Friday 27 April or 5.30pm on Saturday 28 April.
The EFL announced the change in the notice period on March 29th and the club then advised fans that the Fulham game could be subject to change. Sunderland AFC was then informed by the EFL on the afternoon of Wednesday (April 4th) that the game had been selected for broadcast and the information was subsequently confirmed to supporters at 5pm, as instructed by the EFL.
Naturally we voiced concerns on how a change would impact on travel, but regrettably we could not refuse the re-scheduling in this particular instance, which is clarified in the EFL’s statement here
Thank you for your understanding in this.
Supporter Liaison Officer