Sometimes, it turns out that the magic of the FA Cup means pretending the entire world has been taken back through time to an age before the internet and 700-channel cable packages. A world so primitive people still think digital watches are a pretty neat idea and where only a handful of matches can be broadcast globally, even if cameras in place and a willing foreign broadcaster or seven would seem to suggest otherwise.
Liverpool found themselves transported back to just such a world on Sunday when they faced off against League One's Oldham Athletic in a match nobody who wasn't at a sold-out Anfield got to see live. Fortunately for fans, it appears set to be a one-off event, at least until next season's FA Cup third round rolls around, as Liverpool's fourth round match against either Bournemouth or Burton Albion at 12:45PM GMT on January 25th has been selected for broadcast by ITV.
With only half the matches to choose from and Liverpool on the road—increasing the chances of the kind of magic of the cupset result English broadcasters prioritise when selecting which matches to televise—it was a near certainty the game would be chosen. Still, after Liverpool were shunned in the third round and the FA turned down requests by foreign carriers to produce a live broadcast from the raw feed used for later highlights and replays, the official confirmation is comforting.
A waterlogged pitch meant Bournemouth and Burton Albion's scheduled third round tie over the weekend was postponed until the 14th, at which point Liverpool will learn if they're heading south to Dorset or making the rather shorter hop to Staffordshire.