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Greek football’s governing body (EPAE), has called off the threat of a second strike after eight clubs agreed a new TV deal.

The EPAE announcement followed an agreement to sell the rights to terrestrial channel Alpha for a reputed €15.5milllion. The deal was accepted bythe clubs even though it represents a significantly figure than their previous contract with pay-TV company Alpha Digital Synthesis.

The collapse of Alpha Digital, which owned the rights to ten of the Greek first division’s 16 teams, and the subsequent refusal of the government to intervene in the dispute, prompted the EPAE to suspend its domestic programme for two weeks. A second stoppage looked likely until yesterday’s agreement.

Second and third division clubs will receive €1.3m of the fee, with the rest going to the eight top-flight teams still involved in the dispute.

The enforced break in the autumn left a huge hole in the domestic calendar with no matches played between 22 September and 26 October.

In addition to the cancellation of all games in the country’s three professional divisions on the weekends of 29 September and 6 October, the following two weekends were affected by EURO 2004 qualifiers and the Greek municipal elections.

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