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Last Updated: Wednesday June 10 2009 12:53 GMT

Sports TV channel in cash crisis

Sonali in an edit suite

Why Setanta's cash crisis is putting Scottish clubs at risk

If you love sport then you've probably heard of Setanta - it's a huge pay-TV channel and now it's in big trouble.

Setanta pays lots of cash to show major sporting events like American golf, rugby and boxing as well as English and Scottish Premier League football.

But it's been hit hard by the global money problems, and now not enough people are paying to subscribe to it.

That means Setanta is struggling to pay sporting bosses the money it owes, and is in danger of going out of business.

Setanta already owes the English Premier League more than £30m and the Scottish Premier League £3m.

A Setanta sports microphone

That doesn't sound like much compared to the multi-million pound deals you hear about for individual players.

But if Setanta doesn't pay up it could have a massive impact on the sports, and even force some smaller Scottish clubs out of business as the cash they get from Setanta is a big part of their income.

Some of those clubs have spent some of that money in advance, or have borrowed cash with plans to pay it back from future TV money, that they now may not get.

Who'll help?

Setanta has also paid for the right to broadcast big England football matches, and is now trying to agree a deal to pay less money than it had promised.

Footie Quiz
A football being kicked into a net

It's hoped a bigger company or rival broadcaster may step in to help Setanta within the next few days.

In the meantime, the channel has confirmed it's stopped taking on new customers as it tries to "secure the future of the business".

Meanwhile, if your family subscribes to the channel you'll still be able to watch it. But if the channel can't sort its money problems, it could pull the plug any day.