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Volume 6 No. 211


The BBC will send 272 people to the World Cup in Brazil this summer, "although that is 23 fewer than in South Africa" in '10, according to Ben Rumsby of the London TELEGRAPH. BBC Sport Dir Barbara Slater said her “aspiration” was to make Brazil 2014 “the first 24/7 World Cup." Writing in a BBC blog, Slater said she aimed to deliver more hours of coverage than in the last World Cup for “less than the cost of a pint of milk for each viewer, listener or website user" (TELEGRAPH, 4/2). In London, Robinson & Sale wrote "there will be 12 separate commentary teams covering more than 50 matches for TV and more than 60 for radio as well as shows including a documentary about David Beckham travelling to the Amazon rainforest." The BBC and ITV "split World Cup coverage down the middle," yet the license-fee funded BBC is sending more than double the number of personnel to Brazil than its commercial rivals. Critics have accused the BBC of sending staff on a "wasteful jolly." Taxpayers’ Alliance CEO Jonathan Isaby said, "Auntie continues to send an army of staff to cover big sporting events while other broadcasters manage to with far fewer" (DAILY MAIL, 4/3). In Glasgow, Daniel Sanderson wrote the BBC "has previously come under fire for the amount of money it spends on sending large teams to cover high-profile events." Coverage of music festival Glastonbury "costs the licence fee payer in the region" of £2M ($3.3M) every year (HERALD SCOTLAND, 4/3).

Discovery Communications CEO David Zaslav said the company's int'l sports network, Eurosport, "could begin looking to expand into more traditional (and more expensive) premier sports rights in the future," according to Mike Farrell of MULTI CHANNEL. Zaslav "praised Eurosport," in which the company agreed to purchase a controlling interest from French sports giant TF1 earlier this year. The deal "is expected to close shortly." At the N.Y. presentation, Zaslav said that the addition of Discovery’s global scope -- its networks are available in 55 countries -- "should help Eurosport appeal to a broader market." And that could mean "acquiring rights to events that have broader appeal." Zaslav: “We have the ability to go for anything. What’s more likely is that we’ll be disciplined. The business is profitable today -- they’ve been smart about locking in their key sports for the next several years -- tennis, winter sports and cycling. Then the question becomes do we broadly or in select markets look to really drive much more aggressively into premier sports? We’re looking at that” (MULTI CHANNEL, 4/3).

Bayern Munich "will not accredit reporters of English tabloid newspapers The Sun and Daily Mirror" for a Champions League return leg next week against ManU over what it calls "offensive reporting after their 1-1 draw this week," according to Karolos Grohmann of REUTERS. The Germans are favorites to advance despite midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger missing the second leg after being red-carded at Old Trafford. Bayern said in a statement, "After the first leg both English media reported about our player Bastian Schweinsteiger in a discriminatory and personally insulting manner." The two newspapers had run similar headlines following the last-minute sending off of Schweinsteiger for a foul on Wayne Rooney using the German word for pig, which is ''Schwein." The Mirror's headline read, "You dirty Schwein," with "a picture of Schweinsteiger." The Sun's headline read "You Schwein" (REUTERS, 4/3).

MP & Silva has acquired media rights for the Copa Libertadores, Copa Sudamericana and Copa do Brazil from '15-18 in Asia. MP & Silva acquired the rights from Traffic Sports. It was negotiated by FSA Media. The only territory in the Asia-Pacific not covered is China. This package will allow MP & Silva to manage the whole South American football TV content in Asia (MP & Silva).

German public broadcaster ZDF "recorded Wednesday's top rating for its broadcast of the Champions League game between Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid," according to Manuel Weis of QUOTENMETER. An average of 8.38 million viewers tuned in to watch the quarterfinal game starting at 8:45pm. The number translated into a market share of 28.3%. In the target demographic 14-49, Madrid's 3-0 victory obtained a market share of 22.8% (QUOTENMETER, 4/3).

Colombian private TV networks Caracol and RCN have acquired the "free-to-air domestic digital broadcast rights" for the World Cup. Caracol and RCN will "deliver their coverage of the tournament via specially created digital television channels, in a move aimed at encouraging the uptake of the service across Colombia." All of the tournament's 64 matches will be broadcast in "high definition on the free-to-air digital service, whilst only the most important fixtures will be aired" on analog TV (SOCCEREX, 4/2). ... Hathway Cable "has removed all STAR Sports channels from its packaged services from Tuesday." This comes when the cricket tournament, , "has entered the semi-final stages." Hathway Cable "has 11 million television subscribers" across India (Indian BUSINESS STANDARD, 4/3). ... Sony announced it will produce the Brazil World Cup in 4K Ultra HD and produce three matches in 4K (FIFA).