Arsenal Football Club is urging its supporters to lobby cable giant Virgin Media to broadcast its fledgling TV channel.
The digital channel was launched four weeks ago with pay-TV sports broadcaster Setanta Sports and is available on satellite but not cable (MW August 9, 2007).
Virgin shows a number of club-branded channels including Liverpool FC, Rangers and Manchester United, but the broadcaster says that it does not have the capacity for the Arsenal channel.
The North London club warned fans at launch that the channel would not be available to Virgin Media subscribers due to “capacity constraints” but it has issued the plea for fans that already subscribe or are thinking of joining to contact the media owner.
On the club’s official website it says that feedback to the channel from fans has been “good”, with the exception of supporters who have Virgin Media as their provider.
A statement reads: “Arsenal and Setanta understand that the continuing absence of Arsenal TV on Virgin is frustrating for Arsenal fans.” The club says it is continuing to work with Virgin to ensure that the channel is available “as soon as possible”.
Fans are being invited to contact Virgin’s customer service centre to register interest in receiving the Arsenal TV channel.
The club adds: “We want Virgin to know that there are lots of customers or potential customers that care about Arsenal and the best way for that to happen is [the fans] to tell them.”
A Virgin Media spokeswoman says: “We hope to launch Arsenal TV soon and will make an announcement in due course.”