Setanta faces administration "within days" unless backers provide more funds to pay £30m it owes to the English Premier League, reports have suggested.
The broadcaster has already failed to pay the Scottish Premier League £3m it owes in television rights money. Setanta, which also shows cricket, golf and rugby union, has about 1.2 million subscribers but is losing up to £100m a year, analysts say.
Would-be customers who attempted to subscribe to Setanta through its website were on Tuesday told that it was not possible because of "routine maintenance". Meanwhile anybody trying to subscribe by phone receives a recorded message saying that "The service is temporarily out of order".
A spokesman for Setanta declined to comment on the firm's situation.