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Volume 10 No. 25


Football Federation Australia is set to sign a four-year, A$160M ($165.9M) broadcasting rights deal with Fox Sports and SBS, beginning July 1," according to Roy Masters of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. Football "is the third code to cash in on TV's need for live action." Fox Sports "will pay about A$32M a year, and SBS A$7M to broadcast the A-League's five games a week, including one free-to-air game on SBS, together with World Cup qualifiers." FFA's current seven-year TV deal is A$19M a year, meaning football "has doubled its broadcasting revenue." Although the contract officially applies from July 1, "four World Cup qualifiers -- against Oman, Japan, Jordan and Iraq -- will be played before that date and shown on SBS on one-hour delay." FFA's windfall "comes off the back of record TV ratings and crowd figures after its decision to start the A-League season in October," clear of the shadow of the Australian Football League and National Rugby League finals. TV ratings for football "have risen this season, from an average of 65,000 viewers a game to 95,000" (SMH, 11/1).

The BBC has "vowed to clamp down" on the companies that are "reselling tickets to this year’s Sports Personality of the Year show at up to 12 times their face value," according to David Kent of the London DAILY MAIL. Tickets went on sale at 9am London time on Tuesday for the Dec.16 show at £50 ($80.5) apiece, but "huge demand meant they sold out within half an hour." The BBC "would not reveal how many tickets were sold for the event at the 15,000-capacity ExCeL centre." However, fans "were left stunned and angry when tickets appeared for sale elsewhere, with ticket marketplace viagogo offering seats at prices ranging from £99 ($159) to £599 ($965)." Bids on eBay "reached £510 ($821) for four tickets." The BBC insisted that "it would take legal action against any company breaching its strict guidelines on the sale of tickets that do not come from one of its authorised outlets" (DAILY MAIL, 10/30).

Spanish broadcaster Marca TV "pulverized all its records" with the audience that watched Tuesday night's Copa del Rey encounter between Barcelona and Alavés, according to MARCA. A total of 2.2 million viewers were tuned in and a 11.2% share. Those numbers are historic for Spanish TV, as it is the first time a digital terrestrial TV network has reached those numbers in "prime time" (MARCA, 10/31).

German telecom company Deutsche Telekom "denied a report about an imminent agreement with Sky Deutschland about Bundesliga broadcasting rights," according to the DPA. A Telekom spokesperson said, "There is no agreement, and there also is no time when an agreement should be reached. Everything can go real fast or be delayed for a long period." Telekom has Bundesliga rights until the end of the current season. The rights after this season reside with Sky Deutschland. The Telekom spokesperson added, "Telekom has an interest in signaling its customers early how it proceeds with football." Sky Deutschland also has an interest in signaling its subscribers early that its images will be available via Telekom (DPA, 10/31).

The Premier League announced that Fox Sports Int'l and ESPN have been awarded the live audio visual broadcast rights for all 380 EPL matches per season for seasons '13-16 in Brazil (EPL). ... No Sky presenters or production staff will be sent to India for England's upcoming cricket tour "after refusing to meet the financial demands" from India's cricket board. The broadcasters are instead "preparing a studio in west London from which to cover the four-Test series." It will be the first time in 20 years that TV viewers "do not receive British coverage of an overseas England tour from inside the grounds" (London DAILY MAIL, 10/31). ... Broadcasters Eurosport, Ma chaîne Sport and France Télévisions have all made offers to the French Football Federation for the rights to six friendly matches of the U-20 national team. It is expected that the FFF will make a decision on Monday or Tuesday (L'EQUIPE, 10/31).