Bradford set to be denied BBC slot for Royals appointment

Bradford’s city’s first 
FA Cup quarter-final since 1976 will not be shown on the BBC.

Bradford City's Jon Stead, centre, celebrates with James Hanson and Billy Clarke after scoring his side's second goal during the FA Cup defeat of Sunderland (Picture: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire).

This season’s competition has rekindled memories of years past, thanks in no small part to the giant-killing Bantams.

A remarkable 4-2 comeback win at Chelsea was followed on Sunday by a 2-0 victory against Sunderland in the fifth round – a match which led to debate over the BBC’s decision to overlook the tie.

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Bradford, who face Reading next, were irked to be one of the three fifth-round matches not shown live by either the BBC or BT Sport, a fate which will be avoided at the quarter-final juncture as all four matches shall be shown.

However, Phil Parkinson’s side will once again miss out on terrestrial television coverage as it is understood the BBC have chosen Manchester United v Arsenal and Aston Villa v West Brom for live coverage.

The BBC released a statement on Monday saying they are in discussions with the Football Association about how to make it easier to choose the most exciting FA Cup fixtures to broadcast live as they had to make their fifth-round selections before the outcome of the fourth-round replays, which included Sunderland playing away at Championship side Fulham.

A BBC spokesperson said: “The match selections are still with the FA and yet to be confirmed. We believe we have selected the most appealing quarter-final fixtures for our audiences, bearing in mind we share the order of picks with our broadcasting partners BT Sport.

“We will be showing extended highlights of all quarter-final ties on Match of the Day, plus there’s live commentary of all matches on Radio 5 live. We’re pleased that all four ties will be televised and all eight clubs will receive £247,500.”

Confirmation is due today that BT Sport will be screening Liverpool v Blackburn and City taking on the Royals.