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Premier League broadcaster will use FIFA to fill stadiums with fake cheering

When Premier League soccer starts up again on June 17, there won’t be any fans in the stadium seats, but the U.K. broadcaster that’s airing the match is partnering with EA Sports to fill that void.

Sky Sports is working with EA’s FIFA team to create a collection of “bespoke and team-specific” crowd noises and chants to air during the games, the network announced.

Viewers will have the option of watching a channel with the added sound or one that will not incorporate it into the matches.

The addition of artificial crowd sounds could add a layer of intensity to the games, especially as Liverpool looks to clinch its first title in 20 years.

“Sky has always been a leader in innovative sports broadcasting, and we’re excited by this opportunity to share something really special with the whole nation,” Robert Webster, Sky Sports managing director, said in a statement. “We want Sky Sports viewers to still feel it all and have the best possible viewing experience — even if they can’t be in the stadiums or watch with their family and friends.”

Sky Sports will air 64 live Premier League games once the season resumes, including 25 made available for free.

FIFA is one of EA’s most successful franchises. The last version – FIFA 2020 – was played by more than 10 million people in its first two weeks of release. The game continues to top the U.K. sales charts.

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Chris Morris
Chris Morris has covered consumer technology and the video game industry since 1996, offering analysis of news and trends and…
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