Football

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Uefa’s Europa League revenue in France will fall in the 2021-24 cycle given limited interest in the property in the wake of the fierce contest for rights to the top-tier Champions League.

StarTimes, the Chinese-owned African pay-television broadcaster, was able to exploit regulatory pressure facing rival broadcaster SuperSport and secure exclusive rights to the English FA Cup and Community Shield at a reduced fee.

The English Premier League has launched the first international media-rights tender of its new sales cycle, going early in the Nordics and offering up the opportunity to bid for six seasons – the first time it has done so in Europe.

Belgian Pro League clubs will be able to exploit near-live clips on their own digital subscription platforms in the next rights cycle: the first time European clubs have been able to do so without long hold-back periods.

Korea’s K-League and the Korean Football Association have pooled their media rights, but an initial tender attracted no firm bids, forcing the rights-holders to extend the deadline and change the tender’s terms to allow consortia to participate.

The African Union of Broadcasting, the body of free-to-air broadcasters, has called for a drop in the rights fees paid by African public broadcasters for major football tournaments held in the continent

Helmy Yahya, the former president director of Indonesian state-owned, public-service broadcaster TVRI has claimed that one of the main reasons he was sacked last week was his acquisition of English Premier…

Invitations to submit offers (ISOs) have been launched in seven countries across the Balkan region for rights to the Uefa Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League covering the 2021-22…

The Swiss Football League is to vote in March on a proposal to expand Switzerland’s top-tier Super League from 10 to 12 clubs.

Features

Uefa has increased the value of Champions League rights in Germany by nearly 70 per cent in the 2021-24 cycle, driven by an intense broadcaster battle in which DAZN ousted Sky Deutschland and Amazon made another foray into premium football.

The Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) accepted a fee from telco Telefónica for Supercopa de España domestic rights that was just half its original target, driven by a dearth of competition for the property.

Sports marketing companies and private equity houses bidding to become the vehicle for the delivery of Fifa’s new China-hosted club competition in 2021 will face the same challenge: the competition is only likely to be successful if a Chinese company is involved.

The South African Broadcasting Corporation’s new deal with the South African Football Association was agreed at a more than 50-per-cent reduction on the pair’s previous rights agreement, with the broadcaster’s financial difficulties key to the decline.

The differing treatment of media operators in the latest Belgian Pro League domestic rights tender is justifiable as a way of increasing competition, according to the country’s competition authority.

Premier League club Liverpool’s decision to launch ‘paid-for’ content options on global video-sharing platform YouTube is a taster of how the platform will develop its sports-broadcasting partnerships.

TF1 and M6’s joint acquisition of Euro 2020 free-to-air rights was struck at a similar per-match fee as the one they paid for the last comparable edition of the tournament, in 2012.

There are two truisms in the sale of sports media rights which at first glance appear difficult to reconcile. One is that every market has a unique set of characteristics and the value earned is contingent upon those characteristics at the moment the rights are sold. The other is that the early deals in a market-by-market sales cycle create a psychological benchmark which affects how sales in the following markets play out.

Absent any competition for Greek Cup rights in Cyprus, Cyta translated a 33-per-cent fall in inventory directly into a near one-third discount. 

Mediapro’s accusation of impropriety in the Uefa Champions League tender process in France has cast a cloud over a record rights-fee outcome for Uefa in the country. But the agency’s threat to take Uefa to court may not be credible, industry experts told SportBusiness Media.
USA

Competition to create effective digital offerings in the US drove a hike in value for Uefa’s club competitions for the 2021-22 to 2023-24 cycle. CBS overcame strong opposition to surprise the market in acquiring English-language rights, while Univision renewed its high-performing Spanish-language rights.

The value of Spanish football’s LaLiga in Turkey has fallen by more than 40 per cent in pay-television broadcaster D-Smart’s acquisition of exclusive multi-platform rights to the property. The deal was the direct result of the cancellation of LaLiga’s agreement with Digiturk earlier this season.

BT’s huge outlay for Uefa club competition rights in the 2021-24 cycle was driven by the UK telco's need to retain a viable sports broadcasting proposition.

The Spanish Football Federation’s (RFEF) decision to award the domestic rights to club knock-out competition the Copa del Rey to commercial broadcaster Mediaset could spark a legal battle following production group and agency Mediapro’s allegations that the decision was politically motivated.

The Scottish Professional Football League has secured a strong minimum guarantee from Infront for international rights to Scottish league football. The deal is robust by historical standards, given that betting streaming rights were not included.

In October, DAZN executive chairman John Skipper described the UK as “a logical DAZN market”, pinpointing three potential avenues of entry: rights to the English Premier League, boxing, and tennis. But experts and insiders surveyed by SportBusiness say DAZN should treat the UK market with caution.

Frank Dunne and Callum McCarthy take a look at the implications of the dispute between the Confederation of African Football and its global sales agency Lagardère Sports.

Pay-television broadcaster Digiturk and Spanish football’s LaLiga have ended their contract in Turkey due to the former's difficulties meeting its financial obligations amid continued weakness in the country’s currency, SportBusiness Media understands, leaving the league without a broadcast partner.

Greek public broadcaster ERT has exploited a lack of competition and its dominant position in negotiations to secure a significant reduction in the amount it will pay to the clubs in the second-tier Super League 2 for the 2019-20 season.