NBC Sports adds Champions Cup to rugby line-up

The NBC Sports division of US media company NBCUniversal has bolstered its rugby union portfolio by agreeing a rights deal with European Professional Club Rugby, the governing body for club rugby union in Europe.

Under the four-season agreement, NBC Sports has secured the rights to broadcast the Champions Cup and the Challenge Cup tournaments in the United States from 2018-19 to 2021-22.

NBC Sports will screen all Champions Cup matches, either via linear programming on NBC or NBCSN, or online via NBC Sports Gold. The latter platform will also broadcast the knockout stage of the Challenge Cup.

NBC Sports’ 2018-19 coverage will feature as many as 65 matches, with at least 15 games airing on NBC and NBCSN.

EPCR marketing and commercial director, Carsten Couchouron, said: “We're delighted to be working with NBC Sports who will greatly expand the coverage of European professional club rugby in the USA which is a key market for us.

“Their existing portfolio of rugby rights means that NBC Sports will bring significant editorial and production experience to the transmission of outstanding rugby experiences from the Champions Cup in future seasons.”

NBC Sports’ rugby union portfolio already includes rights to the World Cup and Six Nations national team tournaments, along with the English Premiership club league.