Fever Pitch: The Rise of the Premier League – 13 September 2021 – 13/9/2021 – Monday – BBC Two

Episode 2
Series 1

With back-to-back titles in the first two seasons of the Premier League, Alex Ferguson has his eyes set on building a legacy at the seemingly invincible Manchester United.

Thirty miles away at unfashionable Blackburn Rovers, multimillionaire owner Jack Walker still has other ideas. Having finished fourth and then second to United, he and manager Kenny Dalglish are determined to go one better. With a personal fortune of £360 million, he has the money and the appetite to spend his way to success. After buying Alan Shearer for a British transfer record, he goes one better and smashes it again by signing Chris Sutton for £5m. But the rapid injection of money into the game – players’ salaries are hitting £10,000 a week – is starting to create a ‘them and us’ divide with the fans.

The David and Goliath title race between Blackburn and United is too close to call until one cold January night halfway through the season, when Eric Cantona launches himself into the terraces of Selhurst Park and kung-fu kicks a Crystal Palace supporter who’s verbally abused him. It’s reported Cantona has been provoked by a racist slur, but his actions cause national outrage, and the threat of a prison term looms for the mercurial Frenchman.

Despite the repackaging of football and the fanfare of the new Premier League, the sinister underbelly of racism remains.

About Fever Pitch: The Rise of the Premier League

Charting the creation and evolution of the Premier League from 1992 to 2000.

This show is broadcast on BBC Two, also known as the British Broadcasting Corporation.

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