BBC renews Match of the Day deal

Alan Shearer, Mark Lawrenson, Gary Lineker and Alan Hansen

The BBC has agreed a new deal to broadcast Premier League highlights until the end of the 2015-16 season.

The current deal had been scheduled to expire at the end of next season but a three-year extension has been signed.

The rights cover the Saturday evening Match of the Day programme, the Sunday morning repeat, MOTD2 on Sunday evenings and other evenings when Premier League fixtures justify a show.

The programmes will be available on the BBC's iPlayer from midnight on Mondays.

Premier League chief executive, Richard Scudamore, said: "The free-to-air highlights are extremely important to the broadcast reach of the Premier League; allowing the competition and our clubs to be seen by the maximum possible number of fans across the country.

"The BBC has done a fantastic job for fans of Premier League clubs by providing quality coverage and analysis across their programmes."

BBC director of sport Barbara Slater added: "We've seen audiences for MOTD grow in recent years and the programme remains one of the BBC's best loved and most iconic brands.

"The new contract will see MOTD celebrate its 50th birthday."

The BBC retained the rights with a bid of £179.7m.

The first ever Match of the Day was broadcast on 22 August 1964 and top-flight rights have switched between BBC and ITV since then.

Premier League highlights returned to Match of the Day in 2004-05.

The show is hosted by former England striker Gary Lineker, with Alan Hansen, Mark Lawrenson and Alan Shearer among the regular pundits.