Inter Media Group secures World Cup rights in Ukraine

Ukrainian football fans will be able to watch the 2018 Fifa World Cup after Inter Media Group acquired rights to the tournament from public-service broadcaster UA:PBC.

The company said it will broadcast all matches from the tournament in Russia exclusively via television channels Inter and NTN.

Ukraine had looked set to be without coverage of the World Cup after UA:PBC in February said it would not broadcast the event, despite holding rights.

Tension between the two nations remains high following Russia’s invasion of Ukrainian territory in February 2014 and UA:PBC chairman Zurab Alasania had said the decision was taken as part of its efforts to become a “benchmark” for other broadcasters in the country.

Ukrainian Youth and Sports Minister Ihor Zhdanov had earlier called on fans not to travel to Russia for the World Cup, while the Football Federation of Ukraine waived its quota of tickets for the tournament and refused to accredit journalists for the event.

Ukraine failed to qualify for the World Cup, which will run from June 14 to July 15.