UEFA are expected to renew their Champions League deal with BT Sport for another three seasons as tomorrow’s deadline approaches.
Sky are bidding to regain coverage but are unlikely to want to spend the £1bn needed to outdo BT Sport, who see holding on to the competition as vital.
Although viewing figures are a problem on the network for Europe’s elite competition, it is claimed that UEFA and the clubs actually care more about the money generated from broadcasters than the viewers they bring to them. While not surprising, it’s still incredibly sad.
Charles Sale, writing in Tuesday’s Daily Mail says, “UEFA believe clubs would revolt if they didn’t maximise income and BT Sport has provided enough exposure in the UK market as well as £900m for the current contract.”
A ‘sub-licensing deal’ with ITV could see the competition return to terrestrial TV once BT Sport have secured the rights, which are currently set to expire at the end of the 2017/18 season.