About the Premier League
The Premier League is the top league of professional football in England. The top-flight league initially formed in February 1992 and prior to this, it was called the Football League First Division, or League One, which dates back as far as 1888. All leagues in England operate with a system of relegation and promotion. However, no teams can be promoted from the Premier League.
If a team is relegated from the Premier League, they will have to play the next season in the Football League Championship. At the time of writing, the Premier League is sponsored by Barclays Bank, which is why the current ‘official’ name of the league is the ‘Barclays Premier League’.
The Premier League has been sponsored since 1993 and each sponsor has therefore been able to determine the league’s sponsorship name. Previous sponsors include from 2001-2004: Barclaycard (Barclaycard Premiership) and from 1993-2001: Carling (FA Carling Premiership).
The Premier League not only contains teams from England. Teams from Wales can also play in this league, such as Swansea City of Cardiff City for example. Most other countries recognise this league as the English Premier League (EPL).
Games are generally played on a Saturday afternoon at 15:00 (GMT) or on a Sunday at a similar time, but games may also be played at some point during the week, usually in the evening. There are currently 20 teams in the premiership and each team will play a total of 38 games. This means that throughout a typical season, all teams will play each other twice and this will include both home and away fixtures.
The Premier League is now the most viewed professional football league in the world and it is currently broadcast to more than 200 individual territories and approximately 643 million homes around the world. Since moving away from the Football League and becoming the Premier League, the League itself has benefited from lucrative television rights deals. BT Group and BSkyB secured the rights to broadcast 116 and 38 games respectively in 2013-14.
This deal was reported to be worth a staggering £3 billion (approximately $4.5 billion). Other TV partners that are legally secured to broadcast games include Sky Sports and ESPN (Live Matches), plus Sky Sports and BBC (highlights)
Most games in the Premier League have an average attendance rate of 35,363 and since the league formed, a total of five different clubs have managed to claim the title. Manchester City won the title in 2011-12. Blackburn Rovers have also won the title once. Chelsea FC has won the title on three separate occasions, the same number of titles as Arsenal, but the most successful Premier League club is Manchester United FC (ManU).
This club has won the title an astounding 12 times, with a possible 13th title being handed to them for the 2012-13 season. Since the 2009-10 season, the teams that finish in the top four positions in the Premier League will automatically qualify for the UEFA Champions League, which is one of the most prestigious knockout cups in the world.