16 MAR 2023

Nordic players begin to strive for the highly coveted Champions League rights

The UEFA Champions League contracts in the Nordics expire next year, and the next cycle of broadcasting rights is up for negotiations, Mediavision analyzed in its latest report.

16 MAR 2023

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The UEFA Champions League is one of the most prestigious football tournaments in the world, where top clubs from all over Europe participate. Together with the English Premier League, the Champions League had the highest viewing interest of all sports rights in the Nordics last year. Mediavision's Sports Analysis 2022 concluded that around 2.5 million in the Nordics were interested in watching the tournament last year.

Because of the high viewer interest, broadcasting rights for the tournament are desirable for media actors. The current right owners of Champions League in the Nordics are Telia in Finland and Sweden, Viaplay Group in Denmark, and TV2 in Norway. However, the contracts expire next year, and the next cycle of broadcasting rights is up for negotiations.

In addition, the format of the tournament will also change in 2024 – four additional teams will be competing, and all participating teams will be guaranteed at least ten matches. The group stage will be replaced by a league phase, also known as the "Swiss model,” which results in 64 (+51%) more games.

It was recently announced that Prime Video and Sky retains the Champions league rights in Italy for the 2024-27 cycle. Under the terms of its deal, Amazon will hold exclusive rights to 18 matches per season and the remaining matches will be broadcasted by Comcast-owned Sky. According to rumors, Sky offered around €180-190 million per year for the rights, and Prime Video offered €100-110 million per year for the exclusive rights to selected matches.

“Which actors that will acquire (or retain) the Champions League rights in the Nordics remain to be seen. With the recent trends, we can assume that the rights come with a hefty price tag, but will prices increase as much as the number of matches? Furthermore, will any of the global actors join the race for the rights in the Nordics?,”  Mediavision wondered.