Spark Sport is promising to provide the best coverage of the English Premier League seen in this country.

Their football offering will be in the spotlight in just over a month, as the new season kicks off, with Liverpool hosting Norwich on August 10 (NZT) in the opening game.

Spark Sport will have all 380 matches live on their platform, with every game also available on demand, along with a range of highlights programmes.

"With the depth and range of content from EPL, we are looking to create a really deep footprint," said Spark Sport CEO Jeff Latch. "We are making everything available as [video on demand] assets; watch when you want it, how you want it, on whatever device you choose."

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The EPL is a key proposition in Spark Sport's offerings.

The 2019 Rugby World Cup is their biggest play, but that is likely to attract a lot of one-off subscribers, with the Premier League more of an anchor property.

Qatar-based beIN Sports had the EPL rights in New Zealand over the last three seasons, with dedicated channels via the Sky Television network.

Before that Coliseum Sports carried the coverage, with its Premier League Pass service from 2013-2016.

Coliseum didn't achieve the cut-through it hoped for, though at that time New Zealanders' appetite (and capacity) to consume content via streaming services was vastly different to now.

Spark is also taking over at an opportune time.

The 2018-19 EPL season was the most captivating in decades, with the remarkable duel between Manchester City and Liverpool.

Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrates after scoring against Manchester United. Photo / Getty
Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrates after scoring against Manchester United. Photo / Getty

The EPL schedule has also been revised significantly, with regular Friday night matches and the introduction of a Saturday evening slot in England, both of which are more favourable for a local audience here.

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"The opening match is at 7am (NZT) ... it's a beautiful time," Latch told the Herald. "There are more matches available [live] at times that are easier to consume for New Zealanders this season, so that's a real plus. And for those who watch later, people will have a choice when they wake up. They'll be able to watch the match in its entirety, or match highlights."

Latch said the highlights will be both short form ("two to three minutes") and extended packages ("up to 15 minutes") although he is awaiting exact confirmation from the Premier League. There will also be a range of magazine shows.

Tottenham Hotspur's record-signing Tanguy Ndombele poses at the club's training ground on July 2. The French international joined the North London club in a €62m ($105m) deal. Photo / Getty.
Tottenham Hotspur's record-signing Tanguy Ndombele poses at the club's training ground on July 2. The French international joined the North London club in a €62m ($105m) deal. Photo / Getty.

However, Spark Sport won't be offering the split screen option pioneered by Coliseum, where viewers could watch several live matches simultaneously.

"Downstream that could be very likely but not for this season, not part of our plan."

Latch said Spark are able to retain matches on their site for up to 30 days, but in practice they probably won't, given the volume of content (10 games every week).

When asked how long Spark Sport hoped to hold the EPL rights, given they will be the fourth different provider in seven years, Latch had a simple answer.

"For ever," he said. "But the deals are in three-year tranches. It's the pre-eminent football property for New Zealanders. We want to keep on carrying it, its terrific content. [But] you just never know. It depends on how much money. It's a big investment, because it is such valuable content."

Latch is also confident the occasional glitches during the first five months of their offering won't be repeated.

The most high profile (during the Under-20 Rugby World Cup match between New Zealand and Scotland) was due to a satellite issue suffered by the host broadcaster in Argentina while the other four problems were process and production issues, rather than technical.

Spark's live event service availability was 99.9 per cent in June, contrasting with 94.5 per cent in March when their service launched.