League gets TV deal extension

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All 72 Football League clubs will meet in the next fortnight to vote on whether to accept the pounds 120m television package put forward by the Football Association. The referendum was thrashed out as a compromise after the League's management committee failed to meet yesterday's 4pm deadline to agree to the five-year deal.

They wanted more time to consider an alternative partnership proposed by the Premier League, but were forced to climb down after a threatened revolt by many of the smaller clubs. They are eager to accept a package which gives the League more than double the pounds 10m a year they receive from their current deal with ITV.

The FA said last night: "We have been disappointed by the speed of the response, but we've also become aware of the growing body of support for the deal amongst club chairmen. We believe the League as a whole is being offered a huge opportunity which guarantees their financial security for years to come and the future of football as we know it."