Fox Sports and News Corp has secured a $346 million broadcast rights deal to broadcast all A-League, Socceroos, Matildas, W-League and FFA Cup games over the next six years.
It is the largest single sports rights deal involving football in Australia and a statement of intent that News Corp plans to cement its position as the home of the round ball game in this country.
Previously, it was thought Fox Sports had secured the A-League and some Socceroos games for the next four years. This deals provides Football Federation Australia with far more security over its prime properties.
“Since the transformation of our game began back in 2003, the change in football has been remarkable,” FFA chairman Steven Lowy said.
“Football has always been the World Game but it is now also entrenched as a mainstream Australian sport, with deep connections to Asia, the fastest-growing region in the world.
“Our game has never seen a deal of this magnitude before. This six-year agreement gives us the certainty to continue to implement our strategy to grow the Hyundai A-League and the Westfield W-League and invest more in grassroots football development and the women’s game.
“It also allows us to continue football’s highly successful partnership with Fox Sports, which dates back to 2005. The reach of Fox Sports, Foxtel and News Corp Australia is unrivalled in Australia. They are the perfect partners to promote football which is the world’s biggest sport and the biggest participation sport in this country.”
The deal excludes rights to the final round of Socceroos World Cup qualifying matches, the Asian Cup, Asian Champions League, which are controlled by the Asian Football Confederation and separately owned by Fox Sports.
“Today’s announcement sees Fox Sports remain the home of football in Australia. We have been there from the beginning, and have walked the hard yards, and we will be there to see Australian football reach its full potential. For us it’s a celebration," Fox Sports CEO Patrick Delany said.
“We will serve up more football, across more platforms, live, ad break free during play and in high definition. The way it should Today’s deal sees Fox Sports home to every major Australian football code until 2020. That’s your team, every round live, no compromises."
The injection of money will see $3 million set aside to attract marquee players but hopefully a larger amount will be spent helping A-League clubs retain key talent and provide a foundation to build across several seasons rather than the current movement of players that holds back clubs from building each season.
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