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Volume 10 No. 24


UAE PM Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum has called in global PR agency APCO "to deal with the media after 11 of his racehorses tested positive for banned substances in Britain," according to Daniel Farey-Jones of PR WEEK. APCO, which has an office in Dubai, "is defending Sheikh Mohammed and his Godolphin stables." APCO also has "been dealing with sports journalists to take them through the case and stress the Sheikh was not personally aware of the use of steroids at his stables." In the statement, Sheikh Mohammed said he was "appalled and angered to learn one of our stables in Newmarket has violated Godolphin’s ethical standards and the rules of British racing" (PR WEEK, 5/1).

ITV has "drawn criticism" after it cut short an interview with Real Madrid coach José Mourinho "just as it appeared he was about to reveal where he would be managing next season," according to the London TELEGRAPH. Following Tuesday night's Champions League semifinal defeat against Borussia Dortmund, Mourinho gave an interview with reporter Gabriel Clarke during which he was questioned about his future. ITV promptly told Clarke to wrap things up "so they could go to the scheduled ad break." Clarke said, "Maybe next season with Real?" to which Mourinho said, "Maybe not. ... I want to be where people love me." Clarke said, "We'll take that as England, we've got to go" (TELEGRAPH, 5/1).

ITV RESPONDS: In London, James Riach reported ITV "has defended its decision" to cut short the interview, claiming that no mistake was made and that it was "too late to arrange an overrun." The broadcaster claimed "the reporter was already in the process of signing off the interview when Mourinho decided to embark on a potentially revelatory statement." ITV said that "if a programme is to overrun, its protocol requires a decision made five minutes in advance" (GUARDIAN, 5/1). Also in London, Sam Cunningham reported Mourinho could have cost ITV £500,000 ($780,000) if it "decided to cut an advertisement break to continue their interview with him." ITV said that "the cost of advertising is very complex to work out," but according to its website it costs between £51,320-60,390 ($80,000-94,100) to broadcast a 30-second advert during its primetime evening shows, meaning it would have cost upwards of £500,000 "if they decided to cut the adverts and run a longer Mourinho interview" (DAILY MAIL, 5/1).

MOURINHO: THEY LIKE ME IN ENGLAND: FOOTBALL ESPAÑA reported Real Madrid’s European exit has prompted Mourinho’s thoughts on his future and the Spanish Press. Mourinho explained that his issues are with the Spanish media. Mourinho: “They like me in England. They criticize me when they have to but they also give credit when I deserve it. I know that some club will want me, especially one, and in Spain there are people who hate me, many in this room, and the situation is different" (FOOTBALL ESPAÑA, 5/1).

EL PAIS' D. Torres opined, "Few people in the football world are better than Mourinho at turning failure into opportunities for personal aggrandisment, self-promotion and the construction of alternative stories" (EL PAIS, 5/1). In London, Lawrence Ostlere noted  that MARCA ran the headline, "Décima (10th Champions League title) dream over for Real Madrid." The Spanish newspaper "summed up the impact of the press conference: 'The elimination of Real Madrid at the hands of Borussia went into the background. The news was Mourinho wanting to leave'" (GUARDIAN, 5/1).

German pay-TV channel Sky "has obtained successful ratings" for its broadcast of the second leg of the Champions League semifinal matchup between Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund, according to Manuel Nunez Sanchez of QUOTENMETER. A total of 1.46 million viewers tuned in to watch the second leg of the semifinal that Madrid won 2-0. The game, which started at 8:45pm local German time, had a 5.3% market share. In the target demographic 14-49, the game attracted 800,000 viewers, which equaled a 8.1% share. Despite Dortmund's 2-0 loss on Tuesday night, the German side advanced to the final on aggregate score (4-3) (QUOTENMETER, 5/1).

The 2013 Int'l Ice Hockey Federation World Championship running from May 3-19 in Stockholm, Sweden and Helsinki, Finland will again be featured free-of-charge on a dedicated YouTube channel. Starting this Friday, coverage of all 64 games will be available. The streaming is complemented by an on-demand service -- offering every game in full length as well as daily highlight clips including best action shots, goals and saves. With a delay of 30 minutes, games will be accessible near-live across the globe -- except for 20 countries where exclusive media rights agreements are in place (Infront Sports & Media).

Austrian public broadcaster ORF has secured the live broadcast rights for the Int'l Ice Hockey Federation World Championships until '17. The rights include the top group world championships as well as the second-tier, Division 1, world championships. Included in the deal are also the rights for audio and Internet. ORF will show the opening game of the Austrian national team at the 2013 IIHF World Championship against the U.S. on Saturday (ORF). ... The FIA World Endurance Championship significantly increased its TV coverage. Agreements have been reached with Sport TV 3 in Brazil, part of the TV Globo group, with the first and last hour of the race in Belgium live, live coverage on Al Jazeera in the Middle East and also on Canal + Desportes & Sportmania in Spain. In addition, RTBF in Belgium will be showing the first and last hours of the WEC 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps live, plus live streaming of the entire race via its YouTube channel. With the additional coverage, more than 340 million homes have the opportunity to watch the second round of the FIA WEC in Belgium (FIA).