Skip to main content

What sport to watch on TV this Christmas and New Year!

What sport to watch on TV this Christmas and New Year!

The best sporting action on TV over Christmas and the New Year, from the Premier League and Ashes cricket to the PDC World Darts Championship

By Chris Miller, Writer

Christmas is about family, generosity, feasting, peace on Earth… and it’s about elite-level athletes competing as fiercely as they can in pursuit of unparalleled excellence. That’s right, the festive season brings an avalanche of sport to your TV, and it’s the perfect time of year to indulge your passions by enjoying top-class sporting contests on telly while munching turkey legs and fruitcake like an absolute boss.


We’ve got your ultimate guide to the best in Christmas sport right here, so you’re always in the right place for the crucial action, from football and rugby union to US sports and the World Darts Championship. Read on for the details of who, what, when and where…


Football On TV This Christmas And New Year

Premier League: Chelsea v Liverpool, Sunday 2 January, 4.15pm, Sky Sports Premier League/HD (CH 512/502)

The biggest and potentially most important match of the festive season comes well after you’ve opened all your presents, and even after the countdown and the Hootenanny. It’s been obvious since about mid-September that there are only three teams with a genuine chance of winning the 2021-22 Premier League, and two of them meet on the first Sky Sports Super Sunday of the new year. The reverse fixture at Anfield was a cagey 1-1 draw – so can Thomas Tuchel or Jürgen Klopp win the tactical battle this time? And will they be able to hang on to their African stars like Mo Salah, Édouard Mendy and Sadio Mané for this game before they’re called up for the African Cup of Nations? There’s a lot hanging in the balance…


Other highlights


Premier League: Liverpool v Leeds United, Boxing Day, 11.30am, BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527)

Sky Bet EFL Championship: Queens Park Rangers v Bournemouth, Monday 27 December, 5.15pm, Sky Sports Football/HD (CH 513/503)

Premier League: Newcastle United v Manchester United, Monday 27 December, 7pm, Sky Sports Premier League/HD (CH 512/502)

Cinch Scottish Premiership: Celtic v Rangers, Sunday 2 January, 11am, Sky Sports Football/HD (CH 513/503)


Cricket On TV This Christmas And New Year

Third Ashes Test: Australia v England, from Christmas Day, 10.30pm, BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527)

There’s been a Boxing Day Test match in Melbourne pretty much every year since 1980 – a beloved tradition at one of the world’s greatest sporting venues. England have a surprisingly decent record in this one, having won four and drawn one of their ten Tests at the MCG in that time, and this could be a pivotal point in the Ashes series. Alastair Cook got a double century last time England played here, but since he retired the pressure will now be on Joe Root and his batting line-up to post similar numbers (and on your eyelids, as the action continues through the night).


Other highlights


Third ODI: Pakistan v West Indies, Wednesday 22 December, 8am, Sky Sports Cricket/HD (CH 514/504)

Second Test: South Africa v India, from Boxing Day, 8am, Sky Sports Cricket/HD (CH 514/504)

KFC Men’s Big Bash League: Sydney Sixers v Brisbane Heat, Wednesday 29 December, 7.05am, Sky Sports Cricket/HD (CH 514/504)


Darts On TV This Christmas And New Year

William Hill PDC World Championship: daily except Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Eve

It’s the big one – the pinnacle of the darts world, and the tournament that makes household names of its stars. Fallon Sherrock hit the headlines two years ago when she became the first woman to win a match (and then two) at the championship; having missed out on qualification last year, she’s back at the Alexandra Palace – can she go even deeper into the tournament this time? Reigning champ Gerwyn Price, not to mention the top-ranked likes of James Wade, Peter Wright and Michael van Gerwen, will be out to stop her.


PDC World Championship highlights


Quarter-finals: New Year’s Day, 12.30pm and 7pm, Sky Sports Arena/HD (CH 518/508)

Semi-finals: Sunday 2 January, 7pm, Sky Sports Arena/HD (CH 518/508)

Final: Monday 3 January, 7pm, Sky Sports Arena/HD (CH 518/508)


Rugby Union On TV This Christmas And New Year

Gallagher Premiership: Exeter v Bristol Bears, New Year’s Day, 4.15pm, BT Sport 2 HD (CH 528)

Having finished in the top two spots in the table last year and then missed out on the title when fourth-placed Harlequins won the Premiership final, both these teams were desperate for success in 2021-22 but have struggled to replicate the same form. Exeter started with two defeats and have been inconsistent since, while the Bears have found themselves in the bottom three after some heavy defeats. Can either turn their season around on New Year’s Day at Sandy Park?


Other highlights


Allianz Women’s Premier 15s: Harlequins v Wasps, Monday 27 December, 2pm, BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527)

Gallagher Premiership: Harlequins v Northampton Saints, Monday 27 December, 4.15pm, BT Sport 1 HD (CH 527)

Gallagher Premiership: Gloucester v Harlequins, Sunday 2 January, 2pm, BT Sport 2 HD (CH 528)


NFL On TV This Christmas And New Year

Cleveland Browns @ Green Bay Packers, Christmas Day, 9pm, Sky Sports NFL/HD (CH 517/507)

Unlike Thanksgiving, Christmas isn’t a traditional date for NFL action but when the holiday falls on a weekend, as it does this year, the competition doesn’t stop. The big clash on the big day features one of the traditional giants of the game, four-time Super Bowl champions the Green Bay Packers, who are looking good for the play-offs – thanks largely to impressive defensive performers like De’Vondre Campell and Rasul Douglas – as they welcome the Browns to Lambeau Field.


Other highlights


Indianapolis Colts @ Arizona Cardinals, Boxing Day, 1.15am, Sky Sports NFL/HD (CH 517/507)

Game TBC, Boxing Day, 5pm, Sky Sports NFL/HD (CH 517/507)

Washington @ Dallas Cowboys, Monday 27 December, 1.10am, Sky Sports NFL/HD (CH 517/507)

Minnesota Vikings @ Green Bay Packers, Monday 3 January, 1am, Sky Sports NFL/HD (CH 517/507)


NBA On TV This Christmas And New Year

Golden State Warriors @ Phoenix Suns, Christmas Day, 10pm, Sky Sports Mix/HD (CH 520/510)

If your taste in balls is more large and orange than oval and brown, the NBA doesn’t stop for Crimbo either, and Christmas Day features a battle between two of the league’s best teams as the Warriors travel to Arizona. Golden State played in every championship finals from 2015 and 2019, winning three titles, but haven’t made the play-offs since and will be desperate to improve their fortunes. Phoenix, though, are an up-and-coming team keen to make their mark after losing last season’s finals to the Milwaukee Bucks. The play-offs aren’t till April, but this match could have a real impact on the outcome of the season.


Other highlights


Atlanta Hawks @ New York Knicks, Christmas Day, 5pm, Sky Sports Mix/HD (CH 520/510)

Boston Celtics @ Milwaukee Bucks, Christmas Day, 7.30pm, Sky Sports Mix/HD (CH 520/510)

Philadelphia 76ers @ Brooklyn Nets, New Year’s Eve, 12am, Sky Sports Mix/HD (CH 520/510)

Phoenix Suns @ Boston Celtics, New Year’s Eve, 6pm, Sky Sports Mix/HD (CH 520/510)


Want to find all your team’s fixtures?

Head to our fixtures generator by clicking on the banner below.


Watch on the go

Virgin TV customers who subscribe to Sky Sports can watch on the go with the Sky Sports app. Not only will you be able to take your Sky packages with you, but you get in-depth sports coverage, as well as exclusive videos and interviews. On iPad and Android tablets you can also access Sky Sports’ cutting-edge second-screen functions. Download from the Apple app store for iPad or iPhone, or from Google Play.


Upgrade to Sky Sports now

Don’t have Sky Sports? You can find out about our Sky Sports package and upgrade here.


Don’t have BT Sport?

You can upgrade to our Virgin TV Maxit package online via your My Virgin Media account here and get all 4 BT Sport channels in HD. If you’ve not registered for My Virgin Media or have forgotten your sign in details just head over to


Not heard about Virgin TV Go?

Don’t let anything get in between you and your essential viewing with Virgin TV Go. With loads of sport and Box Sets to try out, you’ll always be entertained wherever you are!


The app is available to all Virgin TV customers at no extra cost and is compatible with Android, iOS, Windows 10 and PC/Mac. Get downloading (from the links below) and you’ll be one step closer to watching what you want, when you want. 


Download the Virgin TV Go app from the Apple app store

Download the Virgin TV Go app from Google Play

Download the Virgin TV Go app for Windows 10


Subscribe to Premier Sports + BoxNation

Here’s how you can enjoy even more sport by adding Premier Sports 1 HD, Premier Sports 2 HD, BoxNation and LaLiga TV to your bundle for £12.99 a month.


Press Home > Apps & Games > All Apps > TV Channel Upgrades and follow the instructions.


Christmas has come early

This year we’re bringing Christmas early with gifts and giveaways, plus check out all your Christmas TV, movie and sport listings and tips on what to watch and play!

You might also like

TV channels: Channels, content and features available depend on your chosen package. Channel line-ups and content are subject to change at any time and to regional variations.

HD: HD TV required to view HD channels. Number of inclusive HD channels depends on package.

ITV HD is subject to regional variation. ITV HD is not available where STV HD or UTV HD is available.

Premium channels (add-ons): 30 days’ notice required to remove premium channels/packs.

Sky Sports HD channels: Sky Sports HD channels £7 per month when subscribing to Sky Sports SD channels.

Sky Sports apps: Only available via the Sky Sports websites or apps (for selected iOS and Android mobiles and tablets) to customers who subscribe to these channels. UK only. Maximum 2 devices. Only available on iOS 8 and above, and Android 4.x. Selected content may not be available to view. Separate terms and conditions apply to the Sky Sports apps and websites.

BT Sport is included in Maxit TV, Full House TV and VIP bundles or can be taken as an add-on at additional monthly cost. Premium channels and upgrades must be kept for at least 30 days.

TV Go: Content available to view depends on TV package. Not all channels/content from relevant pack available. Live streaming and On Demand requires broadband/WiFi or 3G/4G access. UK only. Access via PC, Mac or TV Go App (selected iOS devices and Android™ devices only). Maximum 5 compatible devices per account can watch TV.

Amazon Prime Video: Amazon Prime subscription required at extra cost. 18+. Click here for T&Cs.