Indian digital sports streaming service FanCode has agreed a multi-year deal to broadcast a number of soccer’s Asian Football Confederation (AFC) tournaments over the next two seasons.
During the already underway 2023-24 season and next year’s 2024-24 season, FanCode will broadcast AFC tournaments including the AFC Champions League, AFC Cup, and numerous youth football editions of the Asian Cup covering both men’s and women’s categories.
FanCode purchased the rights from Football Sports Development Limited (FSDL), the Indian rights holder.
FanCode co-founder Prasana Krishnan said: “We are delighted to partner with the Asian Football Confederation and bring some of the biggest names along with some top matches to fans in India. This will further help the Indian soccer ecosystem to grow.”
One Indian team, Mumbai City FC, will compete in the AFC Champions League while two more, Odisha and Mohun Bagan SG, will compete in the AFC Cup, the continent’s secondary continental competition.
Despite the two-year timeframe of the deal, it has not been reported how the rights may be affected next season. The 2023-24 season will be the final for the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup in their current formats. Starting in 2024-25, the tournaments will be revamped, with 76 participating clubs competing across three tiers instead of the current two-tier structure.
As part of this, the AFC’s top-tier men’s club competition will be rebranded as the AFC Champions League Elite, the second-tier competition named AFC Champions League 2, and a third-tier competition will be introduced, known as the AFC Challenge League.
A new women’s tournament, the AFC Women’s Champions League, will also be introduced in 2024-25.
FanCode already has the streaming rights to several soccer competitions including England’s second-tier EFL Championship, the Japanese J-League, and most recently, the English Women’s Super League (WSL). FanCode won the streaming rights for the WSL in India in March, showcasing the remainder of the 2022-23 season and the entirety of the 2023-24 season.
FanCode also was the Indian streaming home of the 2023 Women’s World Cup of soccer. Through the sub-licensing tie-up with 1Stadia, FanCode exclusively streamed the tournament's games on its mobile app and via its online site.