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Volume 6 No. 212


Real Madrid has taken to its official website to ask for offers for its TV rights for the '14-15 season, according to FOOTBALL ESPANA. A court ruling ordered the club to "end a deal with company Mediapro for their audiovisual rights." An appeal is "still pending, but in the meantime," Real has released a statement asking "potential companies to come forward and bid for their television rights for the upcoming season." The club's statement said, "As the Press picked up at the time, at the end of last year the Competition Commission (CNMC) finalised a document that was started in May 2012. In said document the CNMC placed sanctions on Mediapro and various football clubs, including Real Madrid. ... Real Madrid will listen to offers from those who might be interested in acquiring available audiovisual rights, with the sole intention of maximising the investment stemming from the club's rights and defending the interests of the club. Those who are interested should make offers to the club within seven days of the publication of this announcement, and should attach an explicatory report of the predicted commercial use and their economic offer" (FOOTBALL ESPANA, 6/23). In Madrid, Marco Ruiz wrote "the conflict goes back further." On July 20, 2012, the CNMC opened an investigation into Real and Mediapro for failing to meet regulations. The "regulation preventing contracts of more than three years had been established in '10, with an exemption for contracts that had been signed before then." But the CNMC "detected that Real Madrid and Mediapro had agreed to an extension to a contract they already had." The CNMC had opened investigations into other clubs before looking into Real Madrid, "including Sevilla, Racing and Barcelona." All three were jointly fined on Dec. 2 -- Mediapro for €6.5M, Real Madrid for €3.9M, Barcelona for €3.6M, Sevilla for €900,000 and Racing for €30,000. The "other background" is that Spanish Superior Sports Council (CSD) President Miguel Cardenal is "promoting the centralized sale of TV rights for La Liga and the Copa del Rey, something that will be included in the new Sports Law" (AS, 6/23).

Three-time Tour de France winner Greg LeMond will make his debut as a TV pundit at the Tour de France as a cycling consultant for Eurosport. The broadcaster will broadcast a record 350 hours -- 90 live -- at this year's race. Eurosport will broadcast live action while Eurosport 2 will show tape-delayed action. The race begins July 3 at 7:30pm CET. All stages are live beginning July 5, with 10 broadcast in full including the opening weekend in Yorkshire. Two "LeMond on Tour" 15-minute shows will be broadcast live every day from Eurosport's on-site studio (Eurosport).

Broadcasters are battling to cash in on "resurgent" National Rugby League sides Parramatta and Wests Tigers as they "begin horse-trading games in the search for ratings," according to Adrian Proszenko of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. While the NRL "bowed to pressure to lock in the majority of the schedule to give fans certainty, there is still the possibility of Fox Sports and the Nine Network switching matches in the final six rounds." The matches likely to cause the "most jockeying between the host broadcasters are in round 24." The issue is "coming to a head as the parties are working through the schedule at present, with a decision likely next week." Last year, the Eels and Tigers finished last and second-to-last, respectively, and were a "tough sell for both broadcasters." Now, however, the two Sydney teams are "the most in demand, with long-suffering fans desperately keen to witness what would be the most unlikely of finals appearances" (SMH, 6/24).

German public broadcaster ARD "attracted satisfying ratings for its broadcasts of Monday's World Cup games," according to Manuel Nunez Sanchez of QUOTENMETER. An average of 10.33 million viewers tuned in to watch the game between Cameroon and Brazil starting at 10pm. The number translated into a market share of 44.2%. In the target demographic 14-49, Brazil's 4-1 win obtained a 43.5% share while 4.28 million viewers tuned in. The close to 30 minutes in which ARD switched the feed to the Croatia-Mexico game attracted 9.57 million viewers. Mexico's 3-0 win had market shares of 45.5% and 44.4%, respectively. Monday's early games "recorded similar ratings." The match between the Netherlands and Chile attracted 9.25 million viewers starting at 6pm. The game had a 44% market share. In the target demographic, the Netherlands' 2-0 win obtained a 44.7% share as 3.44 million viewers tuned in (QUOTENMETER, 6/24).

IN SPAIN: AS reported Monday's game between Spain and Australia attracted an audience of 5.4 million viewers, which translated to a market share of 47.4% on Mediaset's Telecinco. The game, which Spain won 3-0, was La Roja's final World Cup contest after it lost its first two matches (AS, 6/24).

South Asia broadcaster Ten Sports "has extended the broadcast rights for the premium football competitions: UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League for the next cycle of three seasons" starting with the '15-16 season, according to INDIAN TELEVISION. The new deal covers exclusive HD broadcast rights "for the Indian subcontinent which includes India, Pakistan, Sri-Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives and Afghanistan." The channel "will broadcast" 145 Champions League matches and 205 Europa League matches "every season" (INDIAN TELEVISION, 6/24).

Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo "was mentioned on Twitter 1.5 million times" during the U.S.-Portugal FIFA World Cup match on Sunday, compared to 465,000 mentions for the U.S.'s Clint Dempsey, according to Doug Gross of CNN. The match "was a high point" in a World Cup "that's already shattering social-media records." Facebook said that it had 10 million people who had "20 million interactions during the U.S.-Portugal match." According to Twitter Data, there were 8 million tweets about the match "while it was happening." The World Cup, bolstered by its "massive international appeal and growing popularity in the U.S., is becoming the biggest social-media event in the medium's short history." The World Cup's opening match spurred 12.2 million tweets alone. The tournament's first week "spurred 459 million posts, likes and comments on Facebook, according to the company." By comparison, the NFL's Super Bowl received about 185 million interactions. A Facebook spokesperson said by email, "Sporting events always drive a massive amount of conversation on Facebook, but what we've seen so far during the World Cup has been extraordinary" (CNN, 6/23).