The three-year renewal from the 2018/19 season means BT Sport will remain the exclusive home for both football competitions. It includes live games, highlights and in-match clips.
From 2018/19 the Champions League will feature a minimum of four participating teams from each of England, Spain, Germany and Italy, the organisers making sure that the importance of home teams is maintained for those territories where competition is at its greatest.
There will also be UEFA Champions League ‘double header’ nights, as live matches will kick off at both 6pm and 8pm during the Group Stage, ensuring that audience is maximised, rather that diluted through side channels.
John Petter, Consumer CEO at BT, said: “We are delighted to have renewed these rights. The UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League are two of the best competitions in the world and we would like to thank UEFA for choosing us as their exclusive broadcast partner in the UK. The UEFA Champions League is due to get even stronger and we are delighted that fans will be able to enjoy two live matches a night for the first time.”
BT will continue to show UEFA matches using the latest broadcast innovation and technology, with games made available in 4K ultra high definition with Dolby Atmos sound, and via the award-winning BT Sport App.
“This was a must win rights auction for BT and it means that BT it is here to compete with Sky for the long-haul,”commented Paolo Pescatore, Vice President, Multiplay and Media, CCS Insight. “Last time round, BT was a challenger but now it has grown to be a strong player in sports TV rights. It is driving innovation with 4K and Dolby Atmos as well in other areas and has brought some great programming like the Champions league goals show.”
BT customers can access the content from £3.50 a month, but Pescatore fears a price rise is now inevitable.