FFA CEO Gallop Says TV Bosses Eye Football Rights After Socceroos Qualify For Brazil
Football Federation Australia CEO David Gallop said that "Australian sport's big boys should be peering over the shoulders, and now TV networks are joining the chorus" as football rides high on Australia's World Cup qualification, according to Bodey & Gatt of THE AUSTRALIAN. The Socceroos' final step to qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil "propelled Foxtel and SBS One to their biggest audiences of the year." And Nine Network Managing Dir Jeffrey Browne confirmed that "all three commercial networks were likely to bid for broadcast rights to the code when they're next available." He said, "I would think by the time that comes around next time you'd certainly have a lot of interest from the Nine network and certainly (multi-channel) capacity and I know you'll have interest from Ten and I'd be surprised if you don't have interest from Seven as well." Gallop said that the domination of the Australian Football League and National Rugby League "was under threat." Armed with a new A$160M, four-year broadcast deal signed late last year and an expected A$12M ($11.4M) to come from FIFA just for qualifying, the former NRL CEO was not about to declare football "would would usurp the AFL and NRL but he still managed to fire a shot across their bows." Gallop said, "Football is the world game. It represents Australia in all its diversity, all its multiculturalism" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 6/20).