TVE back in for Spain national team football rights

Spanish public-service broadcaster TVE plans to make a significantly higher offer than commercial broadcaster Mediaset originally agreed to pay for the rights to Spain national football team games after the Real Federación Española de Fútbol, the country’s federation, put the rights back on the market, according to the Vertele news website.

TVE is ready to bid €24.5 million ($32.3 million) for the rights starting immediately and running through to June 2014 – €7.5 million more than Mediaset agreed to pay in a deal that was struck with the Grupo Santa Mónica agency in January.

The federation confirmed earlier this week that it had cancelled its rights distribution deal with Santa Mónica after accusing the agency of breaching its contract by failing to consult with the national body over the Mediaset agreement.

TVE held the national team rights from 2008 to 2012 in a deal with the agency, but was replaced in January by Mediaset, which owns the Telecinco and Cuatro commercial channels.

Mediaset has already shown the first game covered by its deal – the Spain v Uruguay game in Qatar on February 6.

TVE is also bidding to acquire domestic rights for one live free-to-air match per week from the Spanish Liga, the top division of football in the country, the report said.

TVE is in talks with the Mediapro agency about acquiring the rights for the remaining weeks of the 2012-13 season for between €4 million and €6 million and the whole of the 2013-14 campaign for €13 million.

The website added that Mediapro has been forced to lower its asking price for the package from €35 million per year due to a lack of interest from broadcasters.