Virgin Media May Reportedly Lose TNT Sports Next Month

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Virgin Media customers could soon face a major disruption to their sports viewing, as the pay-TV provider reportedly risks losing access to TNT Sports, including highly popular Premier League football matches.

This potential blackout, which could affect hundreds of thousands of subscribers, comes from an ongoing dispute over broadcasting fees between Virgin Media O2 and TNT Sports.

As reported by The Telegraph, negotiations between the two companies have reached a critical point, with the threat of service loss looming as early as next month.

If an agreement isn’t reached, Virgin Media subscribers might find themselves scrambling for alternative ways to watch their favourite sports, potentially facing additional costs and the inconvenience of setting up new subscriptions or devices (see below for alternative options).

TNT Sports: The Road So Far

TNT Sports, which rebranded from BT Sport in July 2023, emerged from a merger between BT Sport and Eurosport.

TNT Sports collage

This consolidation brought together BT’s sports coverage with Warner Bros. Discovery’s established Eurosport network, creating a powerhouse in sports broadcasting.

The rebranding aimed to consolidate the TV and streaming rights of both services under the umbrella of Discovery+.

TNT Sports now holds the rights to a wide array of sporting events, including the UEFA Champions League, Premier League matches, Premiership Rugby, and the Champions Cup.

Premier League logo on phone
Premier League logo (Photo: Deposit Photos)

TNT Sports has also secured exclusive pay TV broadcast rights for the Olympic Games Paris 2024. However, the Olympics coverage falls under the Eurosport brand, so even if TNT Sports leaves Virgin Media, its customers will still be able to watch the Olympic Games.

This is because access to Eurosport is not affected by the ongoing negotiations between Virgin Media and TNT Sports.

Virgin Media’s Previous TNT Sports Shake-up

In September 2023, Virgin Media made a significant change to its TV packages by removing TNT Sports from its bundles.

Virgin Media O2 Stream with Logo collage

This meant that new customers would have to add TNT Sports as a paid add-on, priced at £18 per month (at the time). Existing customers were initially exempt, but faced the same changes upon contract renewal or when making alterations to their existing bundles.

When questioned about this change, a Virgin Media spokesperson told us at the time: “We are simplifying our broadband and TV packages to make it easier for customers to find a great-value plan that suits their needs.

“Existing customers will not see their package change as a result of these bundle updates unless they make a change to their services and agree a new deal with us.”

However, many sports fans who had previously enjoyed TNT Sports as part of their package were disappointed by the decision and had to renew at higher costs (assuming they wanted to keep TNT Sports).

Will TNT Sports Leave Virgin Media?

The current negotiations between Virgin Media and TNT Sports have been described as a “hot dispute” by sources who spoke with The Telegraph.

The disagreement centres on the renewal terms of their contract, which expires at the end of July.

TNT Sports presenters on TV

Virgin Media is reportedly pushing for a significant price reduction for the new three-year deal, based on declining viewing figures for TNT Sports. On the other hand, TNT Sports is aiming to maintain the existing terms of their agreement.

If the two parties fail to reach an agreement before the current deal expires, Virgin Media customers will lose direct access to TNT Sports.

And, since Virgin Media’s TV devices don’t currently support the Discovery+ app – they won’t be able to use that as a workaround either.

This would mean the loss of direct access to popular content including Premier League and Champions League football matches, Premiership Rugby games, MotoGP, WWE, and French Open tennis.

Alternative Ways to Watch TNT Sports

For those concerned about potentially losing access to TNT Sports through Virgin Media, remember that there are alternative ways to watch the channel’s content.

Discovery plus on tv remote

TNT Sports is available as part of Discovery+’s Premium tier, which can be accessed via various streaming devices, Smart TVs, and mobile platforms.

However, if negotiations fail, Virgin Media’s customers will still need a separate streaming device if they wish to access Discovery+ and TNT Sports as part of it.

As of this writing, Discovery+ offers three subscription tiers:

1. Basic Tier: £3.99/month or £39.99/year (non-sports content only, such as lifestyle, nature and factual shows)
2. Standard Tier: £6.99/month (includes Eurosport)
3. Premium Tier: £30.99/month (includes TNT Sports and Eurosport)

The Premium tier provides access to all TNT Sports content, Eurosport, and Discovery+’s extensive library of lifestyle and documentary programming.

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4 thoughts on “Virgin Media May Reportedly Lose TNT Sports Next Month”

  1. Well as someone who just renewed his package I’d be more annoyed that I would be paying for a premium package for the next year that I was no longer getting. I am also less interested in other more expensive ways to still view the channels. The reason why BT had to sell it off in the first place is so few people think they offer value for money for the price over what Sky offer and not as many people were subscribing. It doesn’t help they have been paying ludicrous money for exclusive rights to European football and not seen much of an increase in viewers as a result. I’m not surprised that Virgin Media would want to pay less if fewer people are watching.

  2. I had a renewal from Virgin stating get the same package for the same amount, lo and behold, I didn’t get that, they wanted £18 more for tnt sports and fobbed me off for months. Won’t be renewing next time round no matter how much they apologise.

  3. Missing a few key facts here. Eurosport merged with BT Sport to create TNT sport. So where as the existing carriage deal until of July won’t be affected everything else will as Eurosport will be getting phased into TNT sport within the next year.


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