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Channel 4 touches down with exclusive NFL deal

Commercial broadcaster Channel 4 has agreed a two-year deal, from 2013-14 to 2014-15, with the NFL to become the exclusive free-to-air television partner of the American football league in the UK.

Under the terms of the deal, Channel 4 will feature live coverage of the annual Super Bowl, as well as the International Series, which this season expands to two regular-season games at London’s Wembley Stadium.

Sunday Night Football, which Channel 4 has broadacst for the past three seasons, will continue to be shown featuring the NFL’s biggest game of the week, while the broadcaster will also produce a weekly highlights show.

‘Hard Knocks’ – the award-winning fly-on-the-wall documentary about life at an NFL training camp – will also come to UK television for the first time.

Channel 4 was the first UK broadcaster to feature regular NFL coverage when it began its ‘American Football’ programme after its launch in November 1982.

The station’s coverage evolved into a mix of live games, highlights and magazines shows and continued until January 1998. The sport returned to Channel 4 in 2010, with a weekly live broadcast of the league’s Sunday Night Football match-up.

BSkyB acts as the NFL’s pay-television partner in the UK market.