The French Professional Football League (LFP) has agreed a temporary television rights deal with Canal+ to show Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 games for the rest of the 2020/21 season amid a domestic broadcasting crisis.
Canal+ has come to the rescue of the LFP who failed to sell its domestic TV rights on Monday (February 1), having rejected offers from the likes of Amazon and Discovery, who they felt undervalued the rights.
The deal will kickoff next weekend, giving the pay-TV broadcaster exclusive domestic broadcasting rights to all top-flight games and eight of the ten weekly fixtures from the second division.
Although the financial terms of the agreement were not made public, reports have indicated that Canal+ will only pay an additional €35 million for the extra games, on top of its existing €330 million for the other 20 per cent of the rights.
Including what had already been paid by Mediapro before they exited the agreement, the LFP are due to receive around €670 million for its domestic rights this season, which is significantly less than its expected €1.14 billion.
The agreement, despite being only a temporary solution, will allow the LFP more time to find a broadcaster willing to take on its rights for the long-term, like was originally planned with Mediapro, who terminated their agreement only four months into its first season, that was supposed to see the broadcaster pay €814 million per season until the 2023/24 season.
It remains unclear whether the stop-gap deal will also end Canal+'s lawsuit over the €330 million partnership, which they felt had been devalued due to the the collapse of the record-breaking deal with Mediapro.
Author: Jake Wilkin