A blunder had 100,000 viewers unable to watch the Premier League fixture between Sheffield United and Chelsea earlier in February.
Thomas Tuchel’s side managed to just about get themselves all three points against the top-flight relegation battlers at Bramall Lane.
With the broadcaster averaging 1.5m viewers per game, it was going to be another game with a lot at stake, and whilst fans got all excited and ready to tune in, “up to 100,000 ended up being let down.
The charity Colour Blind Awareness have previously stated that one in 12 men – or six per-cent – are affected by the visual impairment.
As Sheffield United’s red-and-white kit clashed with Chelsea’s “arctic blue”, it left some viewers venting their anger on Twitter.
Many won’t know this, but, all Premier League kit requests are put through an “online software tool” before the game to ensure they are “colour blind friendly”.
Yet Chelsea’s game over the Blades was the fifth time this season that kits have clashed – despite huge volumes of guidance from the FA, UEFA and top-flight.
The colour blind charity explained that both teams would have been made aware of the clash for colour blind viewers and decided to take action.
“There is software that should have highlighted this,’ said Kathryn Albany-Ward, the chief executive of Colour Blind Awareness.
“When the Premier League receive the kit choices from the clubs they run the software and highlight if it could be a kit clash. Then it’s up to the clubs to decide.
“There must be a reason Chelsea are playing in the away kit.
“They have decided they know better. That is my interpretation from what has happened before.
“It is the club’s decision to override the Premier League administrators, if that’s what they want to do.”
Social media account @KitCrimes, who have over 24,000 followers, also expressed their frustration at seeing the two kits for the fixture, writing: “Simply unacceptable from Chelsea.”
— Kit Crimes ⚽️ (@KitCrimes) February 5, 2021
Southampton vs Manchester United, Sheffield United vs Southampton and Liverpool vs Crystal Palace have also been criticised for their lack of empathy to those suffering from colour blindness.
Kit Crimes have also slammed the shirt choice for Saturday’s meeting between Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur, saying: “Tottenham needlessly in green today. #MCITOT – Not unusual for Man City or Tottenham to change kits when they meet these days, but that wasn’t always the case.”
— Kit Crimes ⚽️ (@KitCrimes) February 13, 2021
Fans reacted as the Sky Sports blunder had 100,000 viewers unable to watch Premier League fixture, see what everyone else had to say below…
@markbloendal: I turned it on, saw 20 matching shirts and simply turned it off again… I wonder where I could inquire to get some refunds for streaming expenses, since they are actively making it impossible to watch what I pay for..
@Loft4W: Someone with a bigger brain has got to explain how this is easier to see than Chelsea playing in their home BLUE kit? @premierleague @ChelseaFC @colourblindorg #colourblind
@Snaipes1889: Absolutely no need.
@indef_articles: “the blue won’t work. we’d better wear the blue”
@Ifctheo: “Make sure its the lighter one because we’re playing a team in white”
@LordTetsuoShima: They deserve to get humiliated for this
@dsimrm: Might be one of the worst I’ve seen. It literally causes more of a clash I don’t understand it at all!
@liamtogher88: Whoever made this decision has a lot to answer for
@cpfc_kris: Teams obnoxiously wearing their away & 3rd kits when they don’t need to is bad enough, but this one actually causes a clash, which Chelsea’s regular home shirt wouldn’t.
@logan67_logan: It’s been happening all season, so many kit clashes and absolutely nothing gets done about it, it’s utterly shameful. People think colour blindness is a trivial issue, it’s not, and these kit clashes are ENTIRELY AVOIDABLE, that’s the worst part of it. Blatant Discrimination!!
@fruitbat17: Do they not appreciate there are colour blind folk watching this… kit clash for me! Why couldn’t #CFC wear blue? I know #sufc are in stripes but still…
@thevisawaverer: How are these kits not more of a clash than the classic Chelsea blue #CFC #SHECHE
@kylewild: i am one of those people that get irrationally mad about kit clash. i know we’re away but wearing a light blue kit against sheffield utd majority white top is just dumb.
@D_VARD8: We’ve changed into a kit that’s a closer clash to theirs than our home one? #CFC
@petehausler: dear @premierleague sort out this kit clash mess. Sheffield v Chelsea was unforgivable & unwatchable today. Reverse fixture had both clubs in their first choice kits and it was fine. There have been many bad-contrast clashes recently. Fix this. #SHUCHE