International Soccer Broadcasting: Facing the Challenges and Opportunities 1

The Rise of Sports Rights Value

Sports broadcasting rights are becoming one of the most valuable commodities in the media industry. The World Cup, the UEFA Champions League, and many other major leagues and tournaments have millions of viewers worldwide. In any continent, fans are passionate about soccer, making it an essential target for broadcasters. Companies are bidding for the right to broadcast these events, which means the competition for the rights has become increasingly fierce and the prices have escalated over the years. Our dedication is to offer a fulfilling educational experience. For this reason, we recommend this external site containing additional and pertinent data on the topic. Read this in-depth content, explore and expand your knowledge!

For instance, in the United States, NBC signed a six-year deal worth $1 billion to broadcast the English Premier League matches. Another example is the UEFA Champions League, in which Turner Broadcasting paid a whopping $280 million for the English-language broadcast rights in the United States for three years starting in 2018.

With the rise of sports rights values, it becomes more challenging for new companies to enter the market. Nevertheless, the emergence of digital platforms makes these events more accessible to viewers who prefer to watch their games online.

New Opportunities for Digital Platforms

Streaming services and digital platforms have revolutionized television in recent years, and sports broadcasting is no exception. These services, like Amazon Prime, Hulu, and Sling TV, are now showing interest in international soccer broadcasting rights alongside traditional broadcasters.

For instance, in the United States, ESPN and NBC are competing against new market entrants such as CBS All Access and Bleacher Report Live for the acquisition of soccer broadcasting rights. Meanwhile, Amazon Prime bought the UK rights for 20 English Premier League soccer matches and has also sublicensed many matches from the German and Italian leagues.

Moreover, social media platforms have leveraged their global reach to live stream soccer games. Facebook recently signed a deal with the Major League Soccer (MLS) to broadcast livegames in the United States. Twitter has also entered the game byannouncing a global deal with Major League Baseball (MLB) back in 2018. Social media is creating a new market for soccer broadcasting and provides clubs and leagues with a platform to engage with their audience.

The Challenge of Piracy and Illegal Streaming

Sporting events are, unfortunately, an attractive target for copyright infringement,costing the broadcasting industry millions of dollars annually. Illegal streaming and piracy pose a significant challenge to the current soccer broadcasting market.

For instance, during the 2018 World Cup, over 3.5 billion people watched at least one minute of the tournament, and about a quarter of those views were illegal, according to an analysis by MUSO, a British technology firm that measures piracy. In Asia and the Middle East, illegal streaming services reportedly outnumber legal ones.

Moreover, millennials see little incentive in using traditional pay-TV channels, which further contributes to the uptake of illegal streaming.

The Future of International Soccer Broadcasting

Although the broadcasting industry faces new challenges, the value of sports rights will only increase. Soccer is becoming more popular worldwide, and it is generally less affected by geopolitical risk. Furthermore, digital broadcasting platforms could offer new viewership opportunities, and clubs and tournaments could seek to offer exclusive content.

Broadcasters will have to improve their viewer experience by providing high-quality broadcasts, interactive content, and more ways to access the games, both in terms of devices and payment models. They also need to develop a robust approach to piracy, both on the legal and technological fronts, to stay ahead in the game. Delve deeper into the subject by visiting this external website full of relevant information we’ve prepared for you. Explore this informative material!


The soccer broadcasting market offers many opportunities for growth, but it also faces significant challenges. The rise of sports rights value, the emergence of digital broadcasting platforms and illegal streaming is transforming the soccer broadcasting market. With the World Cup, the UEFA Champions League, and many other major soccer events, viewers all around the world are passionate about soccer. Broadcasting companies will have to adapt to the new reality in the market or risk being left behind.

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