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Premier League forced back to market in Thailand, Vietnam after Facebook talks collapse

Talks between the English Premier League and social media platform Facebook to finalise two media-rights deals in Asia have collapsed, SportBusiness Media understands.

Facebook outbid rivals for rights covering Thailand, Laos and Cambodia in May 2018 and in Vietnam the following month. Both agreements were due to begin from next season, 2019-20, for three seasons. However, the deals were never concluded.

The league entered a ‘standstill agreement’ with Facebook, in which the platform, as the highest bidder, had an exclusive period of negotiation. But after eight months of talks between lawyers for the two sides, there were a number of issues that could not be agreed upon and that the parties decided could not be overcome by further negotiation.

The league will now have to go back to market and sell the rights again, with limited time before the new season.