Viaplay, the embattled European pay-TV broadcaster, has secured rights across five Nordic countries to the trio of UEFA European men’s club soccer competitions for the 2024-27 cycle.

Specifically, Viaplay will cover the top-tier UEFA Champions League (UCL) exclusively in Sweden and Denmark, the second-tier Europa League and third-tier Conference League exclusively in Norway and Finland, while in Iceland all those competitions will be shown on a non-exclusive basis.

Meanwhile, Bulgarian pay-TV offering bTV has renewed its deal for the trio of UEFA competitions. The UCL, Europa League, and Conference League will all be available to view for the next three seasons on bTV's linear and digital platforms, as well as on the streaming platform Voyo.

bTV has been a UEFA partner for most of the 21st century, although through the current cycle, UCL action has also been shown by the Max Sport pay-TV network.

UCL coverage in Sweden represents a significant rights addition for Viaplay, with Telia holding rights during the 2021-24 cycle (which comes to an end with the 2023-24 final on June 1).

The other Nordic tie-ups represent extensions of previous agreements, as Viaplay looks to consolidate key soccer rights in its main Nordic territories after having to pull out of various markets earlier this year following significant financial issues in 2023.

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In mid-April, Norwegian broadcaster TV2 confirmed it had renewed UCL rights for the 2024-27 cycle, while in Iceland, commercial broadcaster Syn will continue to share competition rights with Viaplay.

These Nordic and Bulgarian deals go a long way to completing UEFA’s broadcast partner portfolio in Europe for the next three-year cycle of its club competitions, running from 2024-25 through 2026-27.

Tenders were launched in the Nordics in late October, while the Bulgarian tender had been open since late 2022. The Team Marketing agency acts as UEFA's partner for its club competition sales processes.

The agreements also come with significant changes to the formatting of the UCL scheduled for next season. The pan-European competition will comprise 203 matches per season across 19 match weeks, as opposed to 17 match weeks and 137 games in total currently. The Europa League and Conference League will also increase in size next year, with the match total up from 282 to 342.

During 2023-24, the Nordics were represented in the UCL knockout stages by FC Copenhagen, who made it to the round of 16 before being knocked out by English powerhouses Manchester City. Ludogorets Razgrad of Bulgaria, meanwhile, made it through to the knockout rounds of the Conference League.

Jorgen Madsen Lindemann, Viaplay Group’s president and chief executive, said: “This new agreement shows our laser focus on securing content that is relevant and attractive for many viewers, and that offers proven commercial possibilities.”

These UEFA deals follow on from an equally significant Viaplay extension in late April, which saw the broadcaster renew its deal with motor racing’s iconic Formula 1 (F1), in the Nordics and the Netherlands, through 2029.

Alongside F1 and UEFA competitions, Viaplay’s premium sports portfolio in the Nordics includes soccer’s English Premier League, German Bundesliga, and Danish Superliga, ice hockey’s NHL, FIS winter sports, IHF and EHF handball, and golf's majors.

The most recent UEFA club competition rights deal, meanwhile, came in Japan, with satellite TV network Wowow retaining the rights to broadcast all three competitions for 2024-25.