BBC drops 'great tradition' of 5pm football results radio service

Charlotte Green (right) has been reading out the results since 2013. Credit: PA

Fans and pundits have hit out at the BBC’s decision to scrap its classified football results service, which has long been a staple for match-going supporters across the country.

Since 1948, every result from top flight, football league and Scottish league matches has been read out at 5pm on Saturday on BBC Radio 5 Live.

But with the BBC adding a Premier League match to its coverage at 5.30pm on the same day, the corporation says it needs to shorten its programme prior to its live commentary.

Malcolm Clarke, chair of the Football Supporters’ Association, described the service as one of the “great traditions” of British football.

"Listening to the classified results has always been one of those beloved, shared routines for match-going fans,” he said,

"This feels like yet another of football’s great traditions has gone and it is a deeply regrettable decision from the BBC - I hope they will think again."

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The football results service, read out by Charlotte Green since 2013, was cherished by fans who would often listen to full set of scores on the radio while driving home from 3pm games.

The decision to drop it has been met by widespread criticism online, with Liverpool legend and former BBC Sport pundit Mark Lawrenson tweeting: “Can’t believe the BBC have dropped the reading of the classified results on Sports Report.

“Talk about an OG [own goal].”

Sports commentator Charles Dagnall also weighed in, tweeting that listening to the results is the “first thing you do when getting in the car after a match.”

The Times’ chief football writer, Henry Winter, said it shows a “lack of understanding of the fans,” while Adam Crafton, reporter for the Athletic, suggested the move may have some merit.

A BBC spokesperson said: “With the addition of the 5.30pm live Premier League match to our coverage, Sports Report has been condensed into a shorter programme.

“We will still offer a comprehensive goal service throughout the day on air and on the BBC Sport website as well as Final Score on BBC One.

“We would like to thank everyone who has read the classified football results on 5 Live over the years.”