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Volume 27 No. 32
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Bayern Munich Excited For Bundesliga's Return To ESPN

Bayern Munich last season won the Bundesliga, Champions League and German Cup
Photo: GETTY IMAGES

The '20-21 Bundesliga season, kicking off this weekend, will be the first available on ESPN in the U.S. after the German league’s deal with Fox ended last summer. Bayern Munich President of the Americas Rudolf Vidal discussed his club's relationship with the network as "very exciting." Vidal: "We know there is a new media landscape out there with streaming services, OTT platforms. We’re very excited to create content for all platforms on ESPN. That means ESPN+, ESPN’s linear channels, 'SportsCenter,' 'ESPN FC.' We think that we are able to create more content around the clubs and the players that can then be available on demand." Vidal added, "We will also try to tap into various shows across the network, which allows us to cross over and reach American fans on the baseball side and the American football side."

WORKING TO CREATE CONTENT: The club, which won the Bundesliga, Champions League and German Cup last season for just the second time in its storied history, is just one of a number of stakeholders in the Bundesliga-ESPN deal. However, Vidal emphasized how closely his team will be working with the network to provide content beyond live games and highlights. He said that a number of opportunities for shoulder programming were discussed during a trip to Bristol after the deal was announced in September '19. "As soon as the contract was signed and officially announced, we went to Bristol and talked to ESPN about what we could do, how we could leverage that," Vidal said. "It’s clear -- we’re here to open Bayern Munich’s gateway to the team and the players. ... We want to open every kind of door to educate the fans the way they should be educated when it comes to, 'What is soccer in Germany?'"