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Uruguayan Football Federation ‘receives two bids’ for domestic rights

The Uruguayan Football Federation (AUF) has received two bids for the domestic broadcast rights to its national team’s qualifying games for the 2022 World Cup, according to media reports in the country.

Telefónica, the telecoms group that operates its pay-television service Movistar TV in Spain and certain Latin American countries, is said to have submitted a bid ahead of the deadline on Wednesday.

Servisky, the Ecuadorian media group, is thought to be the other bidder.

The rights on offer include those to Uruguay’s nine home qualifying fixtures, beginning with Uruguay-Chile clash on March 26.

Movistar TV is only bidding for the streaming rights on offer, while Servisky is targeting the streaming and cable television rights, according to El Observador.

The AUF also continues to run its tender process for international rights to Uruguay’s national team matches.

Servisky was among the companies to submit an offer by the initial September deadline.

Mediapro, the Barcelona-based rights agency and production group, and Torneos, the Argentinian rights agency, were also reported to have lodged offers for the international rights.

The Full Play agency held the international rights to Uruguay’s nine home qualifying games for the 2018 World Cup, paying $6m (€5.4m).

Under that agreement, Full Play, as the major distributor of World Cup qualifying games in the Conmebol zone, gave the AUF the broadcast rights in Uruguay to 81 qualifiers played elsewhere in South America. These rights were subsequently sold on by the national federation to the Tenfield agency in a wider package for $12m.

In the absence of a wider agency agreement, the AUF has been selling rights to its home friendly games on a match-by-match basis as it seeks a more permanent agreement for the World Cup qualifiers.

In October, Uruguayan agency Tenfield acquired domestic rights to the Uruguayan national football team’s four remaining international friendlies in 2019. Tenfield showed the games on VTV, its subscription sports channel.

The AUF initially failed to attract any bids for an initial six-game package. Consequently, Uruguay’s friendly matches against Costa Rica and USA were streamed by Vera+, the digital platform owned by government telecoms company Antel. The production was handled by the federation’s AUF TV channel.