Big shakeup in Champions League TV rights for Ireland
TV3 now hold the large bulk of games with RTÉ losing out on final
TV3 will broadcast the majority of Champions League games in Ireland from next year. Photo: Burak Akbulut/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
TV3 have secured the rights to show most of next season’s Champions League matches with RTÉ losing out on the final in a deal that will run for the next three years.
Under a new deal, TV3 will now show all of the Wednesday night games in the competition as well as Europa League matches on Thursday nights and the finals of both competitions.
RTÉ will have first choice of Tuesday night matches while TV3 will also broadcast a game on Tuesdays. This is down to the fact that kick off times will now be spaced out in the Champions League from next season with games starting at 5.55pm and 8pm.
On Wednesdays TV3 will show games at both times while on Tuesdays the games will be split between TV3 and RTÉ.
On satellite TV BT Sport continue to hold exclusive rights although there is speculation that they may sub-let some games to Channel 4 or ITV as there are currently no European games on terrestrial television in the UK.
The move from TV3 is the latest in their ever-expanding live sport portfolio which now includes the majority of the Champions League and Europa League, the Rugby World Cup, the Six Nations, the Champions Cup and UK racing. Also included in the package announced today are exclusive rights to Champions League and Europa League highlights, the Uefa Super Cup and the final qualifying round for the Champions League which could feature Cork City.
In other news, BT Sport will make the Champions League final between Liverpool and Real Madrid available to watch for free online. Non-subscribers will be able to view the match in Kiev on May 26th via YouTube, the BT Sport app and the company’s website.
Pete Oliver, managing director of marketing and sales at BT, said: “To have Liverpool in the Uefa Champions League final is fantastic.
“We have always said that we want to make top quality sport available to more people and so once again we will be making the Uefa Champions League final and the Uefa Europa League final available to all to watch online for free.”