S4C set to lose rights to Wales football matches as UEFA sells rights to Viaplay
S4C is set to lose the ability to broadcast Wales’ matches after UEFA sold the rights to Viaplay.
The Football Association of Wales announced this morning that UEFA and Viaplay have entered a four-year partnership in the UK for Viaplay to show at least 40 exclusively live matches featuring Wales. They have also sold the rights to Scotland and Northern Ireland.
When announcing this new four-year partnership from 2024, Viaplay has made a commitment to making Cymru matches available with Welsh language commentary.
The Chief Executive of the FAW, Noel Mooney, took to Twitter to say that discussions were continuing.
“UEFA sell the centralised rights for all 55 national associations in Europe,” he said. “We are in discussions with them re Welsh language, promotion of domestic game internationally, free to air matches of the Cymru national teams etc. Will update ASAP.”
Starting in 2024, Cymru’s European Qualifiers for UEFA Euro 2028 and FIFA World Cup 2026 will be exclusively available on Viaplay, along with UEFA Nations League 2024/25 and 2026/27, in addition to international challenge matches.
The agreement comes through UEFA’s centralised National Association media rights sales process, under which UEFA takes sole responsibility for the marketing and sales of broadcast rights for member associations, the FAW said.
This process ensures a guaranteed amount received by the FAW for Cymru matches.
Viaplay is a streaming service that will launch in the UK during the second half of 2022 with a broad offering that combines live sports with premium original content and more, the statement said. Further details of Viaplay’s UK content, pricing and launch date will be announced in due course.
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