EXCLUSIVE: Five packages offered as Champions League media rights hit Spanish market

The Team Marketing agency has issued invitations to submit offers (ISOs) for broadcast rights in Spain to the Uefa Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League across the 2021-22 to 2023-24 cycle.

Two concurrent sales processes – one covering the Champions League, Uefa Super Cup and Uefa Youth League, the other covering the Europa League and new third-tier Europa Conference League – have been issued.

Interested Spanish broadcasters must lodge their bids by 10am (CET) on March 10.

SportBusiness understands that a total of five Champions League rights packages (A1, A2, B, C1 and C2) are being offered.

Spanish sports rights agency and production group Mediapro and pay-television broadcaster beIN Sports emerged victorious during the last Uefa club rights sales process (in 2017). Mediapro and beIN, which had formed a joint channels venture in Spain in 2015, subsequently sold on the rights to telecoms operator Telefónica, which showcases the matches on its Movistar+ service.

The acquisition of Champions League rights from 2018-19 to 2020-21 by Mediapro and beIN (and subsequent on-sale to Telefónica) signalled the end of free-to-coverage in Spain (on commercial broadcaster Atresmedia and Catalan public broadcaster TV3). Free-to-air coverage of one Europa League fixture per match day is available, however, on Gol, the Mediapro-owned channel.

It is understood that the Champions League, Super League and Youth League rights have been divided up into five packages.

Package ‘A1’ includes the 16 first-pick Tuesday-evening matches each season, plus 33 magazine programmes (per season). Rights to 16 first-pick Wednesday-evening matches each season are included in package ‘A2’, along with rights to the Champions League final and the Super Cup (plus 33 magazine programmes). The rights include live match programmes, full match re-runs and clips.

Meanwhile, Package B includes a total of 104 live matches per season (plus 33 magazine programmes) or, in other words, the Champions League matches not selected in Packages A1 and A2. Delayed and archive rights, plus the rights to the Uefa Youth League, are also part of this package.

Finally, Packages C1 and C2 pertain to highlights programmes on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings, respectively. Highlights rights to the Champions League final and Super Cup are included in package C2.

Uefa and Team chose the US market as the first in which to go to market for the new cycle as the international sales process began four months ago. Rights processes were then initiated in the UK, France, Russia, Austria, Germany and Switzerland.

The launch of the ISOs in Spain means that the sales process has been initiated (or completed) in four of Europe’s ‘big five’ markets, with only Italy remaining.

Team recently went to market with the Uefa club rights in the Balkan countries, and also Malta.