Italian league sells TV rights for USA, stalemate on home market

ROME: In this file photo taken on June 27, 2020 a general view shows a television broadcast camera and empty tribunes prior to the Italian Serie A football match Lazio vs Fiorentina at the Olympic stadium in Rome. – AFP

MILAN: Italian top flight football clubs on Tuesday again failed to reach agreement on the sale of domestic television rights for the next three years, but the CBS network will broadcast in the United States. Italy’s 20 Serie A clubs voted unanimously to assign CBS international audiovisual rights for the Italian championship and Coppa Italia for the period 2021-2024. “In a strategic area like the United States of America we have increased the value of our rights by over 30 percent with a major partner like CBS,” said Lega Serie A CEO Luigi De Siervo.

“This is the result of work over the last 18 months and the growing number of American owners who have decided to invest in our teams,” he added. However, clubs failed to reach agreement for the seventh time on the home market with rules stating at least 14 must be in favor for the vote to be carried.

The Italian league hopes to raise over 973 million euros ($1.1 billion) per annum over the next three years from the sale of pay-TV rights domestically. “Regarding the television rights for the Italian territory for the three-year period, the vote did not lead to the assignment of any package, so the issue will be discussed again at the Assembly on March 26,” Lega Serie A added.

The limit for the validity of offers submitted last January by the DAZN sports streaming platform and current provider Sky is March 29. If rights are not awarded by this date, a new call for tenders should be launched, with the risk of a downturn in offers. – AFP


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