Sport TV receives joint bid from broadcasters for Euro 2020 FTA rights

Portuguese pay-television broadcaster Sport TV has reportedly received a joint bid from public broadcaster RTP and commercial broadcaster SIC for the rights to broadcast 22 free-to-air matches from next summer’s Uefa football European Championships.

Portuguese newspaper Público reported that the pair submitted their offer more than a month ago but are yet to get a response from Sport TV.

The deal would reportedly include the tournament’s opening match, all of Portugal’s group games, some round-of-16 matches, the quarterfinals, the semifinals and the final itself.

RTP reportedly had its own bid for the rights rejected by Sport TV, though it is not known whether that would have encompassed the same inventory as its joint bid with SIC.

The pay-television broadcaster was thought to be considering its options last week after chief executive Nuno Ferreira Pires was quoted in local media saying this was a “critical time” for negotiations.

Pires has said that Sport TV will broadcast the free-to-air rights on its Sport TV+ channel which does not require a subscription to access. Sport TV+ is available in roughly 92 per cent of Portuguese households.

Sport TV acquired both the pay-television and free-to-air rights to Euro 2020 in February this year. The acquisition marked the first time a Portuguese broadcaster had acquired both available packages in a single deal.

Rights for Euro 2016 were acquired by RTP in Portugal via its membership of the EBU, which acquired rights across 26 countries in Europe. However, Sport TV went on to show all 51 matches from the tournament in a sublicensing deal with the public broadcaster, which kept hold of rights to 24 fixtures, including Portugal’s matches and the knockout round matches.

Portugal won the 2016 tournament and has qualified for Euro 2020.

RTP currently hold rights to first- and second-party Uefa European Qualifier and Nations League rights from 2018-19 to 2021-22. Sport TV acquired third-party rights over the same period.

Rights to Euro 2020 were sold by the CAA Eleven agency, Uefa’s sales agent for its national team matches.