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Soccer - 25 Jun 2021
SRG SSR, the public-service broadcaster in Switzerland, has extended its rights deal for European national team soccer competitions for the period from 2022 to 2028, including almost all matches played by the Swiss men's team.
The deal, concluded yesterday by the broadcaster and CAA Eleven, the sales rights agency for national team competitions organised by Uefa, also involves SRG SSR sub-licensing selected rights to the CH Media group.
SRG SSR, through its membership of the EBU, the free-to-air group of European broadcasters, has been a long-time rights-holder for Swiss national team games and Uefa national team competitions, and was the host broadcaster of Euro 2008, a tournament co-hosted by Austria and Switzerland.
The broadcaster will have rights to the top-tier European Championships in 2024 and 2028, the qualifying games for those competitions, the three Nations League tournaments between 2022 and 2027, and the accompanying Nations League Finals mini-tournaments.
Every game played by the Swiss national team outside the Fifa World Cup, between 2022 and 2028 is included in the deal, as well as 30 matches over two-year periods - from either the qualifiers, the Nations League and schedule of friendlies - not involving the Swiss team.
Given SRG SSR already has rights to the 2022 Fifa World Cup through a separate deal, this means in effect that the broadcaster will be able to show all matches played by the Swiss national team live for at least the next five years. Rights in Switzerland for the 2026 World Cup have not yet been awarded.
The package to be sub-licensed out to CH Media includes five Switzerland matches over each two-year period in the 2022-28 cycle, with SRG SSR to decide which fixtures these are.
CH Media has also secured rights to 10 of the 30 games not involving Switzerland, again over each two-year period, and will also be able to show all the Nations League Finals matches if Switzerland do not qualify for the event.
In total, CH Media’s rights could cover up to 57 matches in the 2022-28 rights cycle.
CAA Eleven launched the tender in Switzerland in early April, with a first-round bid deadline of 6 May.
The announcement by SRG SSR has come in the midst of its coverage of the ongoing Euro 2020 tournament, with Switzerland set to face France on Monday in the round of 16.
Roland Magerie, head of sport at SRG SSR, said: “I am very pleased that over the next seven years we will be able to offer spectators from all over Switzerland an exciting live football program, including all the big matches of the national team and the finals of the European Championship.”
Gilles Marchand, the broadcaster’s director general, added, on the CH Media sublicensing deal: “Cooperating with private media companies is a strategic objective of the SRG. The collaboration of SRG with CH Media in the field of international football is an example of successful cooperation.”
The agreement to sub-license some games to CH Media comes after the latter last year dislodged SRG SSR as the free-to-air broadcaster in Switzerland for the Uefa Champions League in the next rights cycle.
From the start of the upcoming 2021-22 campaign until the end of the 2023-24 season, Champions League pay-TV rights holder Blue will sub-license games out to CH Media, and not to SRG SSR, which had been the competition’s free-to-air broadcaster in Switzerland since 1992.
CH Media will have rights to show 23 matches from the Champions League, the second-tier Uefa Europa League, and the new Uefa Europa Conference League.