Linnets get £75,000 TV deal for FA Cup

King's Lynn chairman Ken Bobbins promised a night to remember after the FA Cup giant killers clinched a £75,000 live Sky television deal.

King's Lynn chairman Ken Bobbins promised a night to remember after the FA Cup giant killers clinched a £75,000 live Sky television deal.

Lynn's glamour second round tie against Coca Cola League One outfit Oldham Athletic at The Walks on Friday, December 1 (8pm) will now be broadcast to a potential viewing audience of millions.

Bobbins and club officials from the Southern Premier minnows met Sky representatives yesterday ahead of a full ground survey by the satellite broadcaster later this week.

The Linnets also confirmed an initial approach from BBC Radio Five Live regarding commentary that could net the club an additional £9,000.

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“I'm elated,” said Bobbins. “It's a tremendous feeling and this is not just for the club, but the supporters and town in general. We want Lynn people to come and enjoy a unique occasion. The atmosphere was already going to be special, but having the cameras there adds something else.

“We never budget for money from cup runs so the extra revenue will have a massive impact. It's a little bit more complicated than saying we are suddenly £75,000 better off.

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“The club will have to improve the floodlighting and upgrade the PA system. As a board we've gambled a little bit this season by increasing the squad to push for promotion. Gates haven't increased substantially so any money we generate will help. I wouldnsay getting a live game pays the wage bill for this year, but when we beat Oldham and get Man United in the next round that'll probably pay the wages for three seasons.”

A Sky Sports spokesman said the broadcaster was looking forward to breaking new ground at The Walks.

“This will be the first time we've covered football from King's Lynn, although we've visited the speedway stadium before,” he said. “We've screened over 250 live games from the FA Cup since 1991 and this tie has all the romance and potential drama associated with this stage of the competition.”

Bobbins confirmed further talks are planned with local authorities later this week regarding ground capacity for the all-ticket clash against the Latics.

“I would imagine at least 3,000 would be the starting point,” he said. “We have to be guided by the police and other agencies but the club feels that with some minor safety adjustments we might be able to raise the capacity to 5,000.”

Spokesman Mark Hearle admitted the club is determined to grab this 'once-in-a-lifetime' opportunity.

“It's absolutely fantastic,” he said. “This is our first-ever live televised game and we'd like to thank Sky for their interest. Beating Bishop's Stortford in the previous round was our cup final. Anything else was a massive bonus. I'm sure it might deter a few Oldham fans from making the trip but that'll more than be covered by the home supporters.

“It's a national window to showcase the town, West Norfolk and non league football.”

t King's Lynn yesterday announced tickets for the FA Cup second-round home tie against Oldham on Friday, December 1 will go on sale at Saturday's Cirencester league game. Tickets can only be purchased from inside the ground at the club's commercial office. Turnstiles open at 1pm. Supporters will be able to purchase two tickets per person. Season ticket holders and vice presidents have until the following Saturday to reserve their two tickets. The commercial office will be open again from Monday morning. Main Stand admission prices: £12 adults, £6 concessions. Admission to all other areas of the ground: £10 adults, £5 concessions.

t Lynn's two-goal Stortford hero Michael Frew has been nominated for the FA's player-of-the-round. The winner of the online poll will receive £500 of football equipment to donate to a local school and two VIP places for the 2007 FA Cup Final. To vote site.

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