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DirecTV snaps up Sudamericana in Latin America

DirecTV has acquired exclusive rights to the Copa Sudamericana in Latin America, multiple sources have told SportBusiness Media.

Pay-television operator DirecTV will hold rights to the competition for the next four years, from 2019 to 2022. It is understood the rights are valid in all of Latin America, excluding Brazil but including Mexico. The deal was completed with Conmebol, South American football’s governing body.

DirecTV’s acquisition further halts DAZN’s ambitions in the region. It is understood streaming platform DAZN – which last week announced its launch in Brazil – bid for Sudamericana rights in Latin America. It also missed out on rights to Italy’s Serie A in the region, which were acquired by pay-television broadcaster ESPN.

DirecTV’s acquisition of Sudamericana rights is understood to be the first move of an attempted shift toward South American club football. It currently holds rights to the English Premier League in a three-season deal, from 2016-17 to 2018-19, but is not expected to renew its deal.

Rights to the Copa Libertadores and the Copa Sudamericana are currently held by pay-television broadcaster Fox in a four-year global rights deal, from 2015 to 2018. The first leg of the Copa Sudamericana 2018 final begins on Thursday.