Followed a protracted set of negotiations, FIFA has struck a deal with several major European countries to air this summer’s Women’s World Cup.
FIFA announced the deal with the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) on Wednesday.
Here’s part of the statement from FIFA President Gianni Infantino.
“FIFA is delighted to widen the deal with the European Broadcasting Union for the transmission of the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup to include the five major markets within their existing networks, namely France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom, as well as Ukraine, thus ensuring maximum exposure for the tournament,” said FIFA President Gianni Infantino. “As part of this agreement, the EBU has committed to working towards broadcasting at least one hour of weekly content dedicated to women’s football on its own digital platform and broadcaster network. This will provide a huge promotional and exposure opportunity for women’s football, which is a top priority for us in line with FIFA’s commitment to the long-term development of the sport.”
FIFA’s statement also includes a note that the 34 European countries airing the tournament “will also undertake to help market the tournament across all their channels.”
Last October, FIFA agreed to a deal with 28 of the countries, but turned down low bids for the tournament in five countries: France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom. This new deal adds those five to the pact, along with Ukraine.
The tournament will air in those five countries on France Télévisions in France, ARD/ZDF in Germany, RAI in Italy, RTVE in Spain, and BBC/ITV in the UK. Earlier this week, various outlets reported on the size of the bids from the holdouts, with the UK bidding at around 6% what they paid for last fall’s men’s tournament and Italy reportedly bidding between just 1% and 2%.
In May, Infantino took aim at the five countries that submitted low bids, and threatened to not broadcast the Women’s World Cup in those countries if the offers were not improved.
Stateside, the tournament will air on Fox Sports platforms, including 29 matches on the Fox broadcast network and 35 on FS1.