BT Sport is facing stiff competition to hold onto its exclusive Champions League rights with ITV and Sky both expected to table bids ahead of Monday’s deadline.
The telco has enjoyed exclusivity on the UEFA European club competition since 2015, prior to which the rights were split between Sky and free-to-air broadcaster ITV.
In an interview with The Times, Sky Sports new managing director, Rob Webster, suggested the broadcaster would be making a bid. When Sky lost the rights in 2015, Webster’s predecessor Barney Francis suggested the competition was over-rated.
“It’s a fantastic set of rights, I’m not going to pretend otherwise and we adopt a disciplined and rational approach to the value of rights in the marketplace, but something like the Champions League is hard to walk past without taking a look,” Webster told the Thunderer.
This time around UEFA has split the rights into further packages for the new contract that begins in 2021.
It could be a crucial bid for BT Sport that has already lost the rights to the FA Cup.
The broadcaster screens a weekly match from the Premier League on Saturday lunchtimes.
Other broadcasters could open the fray, including streaming service DAZN, but Amazon Prime Video is said to have ruled itself out.