Sky Italia holds onto Bundesliga rights as Ligue 1 deal struck

Sky Italia has struck a four-year broadcasting arrangement with the subsidiary arm of the German Football League (DFL), Bundesliga International, until the end of the 2024/25 season, whilst the pay-television broadcaster has also announced it has acquired the rights to air the French Ligue 1.

The deal kicks off with the 2021/22 season and grants the broadcaster the rights to the German top-tier and Bundesliga 2 fixtures. Sky has also acquired the rights to show Bundesliga relegation play-offs, the German Super Cup and additional magazine shows.

“There is a rich history between German and Italian football and our partnership with Sky Italia is built on many years of mutual trust and respect – we are delighted to be able to announce this extension,” noted Robert Klein, Chief Executive of Bundesliga International. “Our fans in Italy will get the best of the Bundesliga and look out for some cool new content formats as we continue to innovate with Sky Italia going forward.”

Coverage will be provided via Sky’s linear subscription channels, along with extra coverage across its digital and social platforms.

Fans of the German football division will also be able to watch a weekly live segment dedicated to the Bundesliga through Sky’s EuroShow programming, available to watch on the Sky Sport24 channel.

Sky first formed a partnership with the Bundesliga in 2003 and the current cycle, which expired at the end of this season, was due for renewal.

Meanwhile, the broadcaster’s new three-year term with the French Ligue 1 will take coverage up until the 2023/24 campaign, with Sky also screening the French Super Cup as part of the deal.

Sky Italia recently missed out on the domestic rights to the Italian top-flight Serie A, after the coveted media package was awarded to rival incumbent bidder and emerging streaming service DAZN.

Last week, it was confirmed that Sky Italia had lodged an appeal with the Milan Court against the recent assignment of the rights package, arguing that the agreement violates the ‘Melandri Law’.

Maximo Ibarra, the broadcaster’s CEO, argued that DAZN’s contract could ‘generate potential competitive and compatibility issues’. He recently stepped down when Sky’s long-running alliance with the Serie A came to an end.