ESPN has signed agreement with the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) to acquire multimedia rights agreement for the UEFA European Football Championship in both 2012 and 2016.
ESPN will be the exclusive home in the United States in all languages for UEFA EURO 2012 and UEFA EURO 2016, which will feature the top European national teams competing in one of the world’s most prestigious championships.
The agreement extends ESPN’s relationship with UEFA, the governing body for association football in Europe, having served as the U.S. television and digital home of the UEFA EURO 2008. ESPN earned much praise for its coverage of the 2008 event, which proved to be very popular among American audiences. More than 41 million viewers in the United States tuned into live UEFA EURO 2008 matches on ESPN networks.
UEFA EURO 2012, Friday, June 8 – Sunday, July 1, in Poland and Ukraine, will include a total of 31 matches featuring the top-16 European national teams. Four years later, the field will expand to 24 teams and 51 matches for UEFA EURO 2016 in France.
Guy-Laurent Epstein, Marketing Director of UEFA Events SA, said: “Following a very successful experience with UEFA EURO 2008, we are extremely pleased to extend our partnership for UEFA EURO with ESPN for the next two tournaments in the United States America. With interest in football growing significantly in America, ESPN will no doubt provide great visibility for UEFA’s national team competitions through their promotional and programming capacity. These long-term partnerships demonstrate the strength of the EURO as a global property, and working with ESPN, we are committed to further enhancing it in the future.”
UEFA EURO 2012 continues ESPN’s unprecedented stretch of presenting marquee global soccer events each summer, beginning in 2006 through 2014 – three FIFA World Cup tournaments (2006, 2010, 2014), two FIFA Women’s World Cup tournaments (2007, 2011), two FIFA Confederations Cups (2009, 2013) and two UEFA European Football Championships (2008, 2012).
In addition, ESPN has acquired the rights for a variety of UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying matches which began in September 2010, and will continue through November 2011. Some of the matches include home fixtures by Spain, Germany, France, and Netherlands, as well as matches featuring Italy, Portugal, England, Ireland and Scotland.
TV AND RADIO RIGHTS
* ESPN and ESPN2 will combine to present live coverage of all matches (31 in 2012; more than 51 in 2016) in high definition. Additional coverage will include pre-match, halftime and post-match programming, news and highlights shows on match days, unlimited re-air rights across all networks and media platforms, magazine programs, and more. * ESPN Deportes – exclusive Spanish-language network for UEFA EURO 2012 and 2016 matches in the U.S. and extensive studio programming including SportsCenter, Fuera de Juego and more. * Exclusive radio rights via ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes Radio or via a sub-license in the region.
DIGITAL MEDIA RIGHTS
* – ESPN’s broadband network in 65 million homes will feature all 31 matches live in 2012 and 51 matches in 2016. Additionally, all matches will be available for replay on shortly after the completion. * ESPN Mobile TV – ESPN’s wireless network will offer live coverage of all matches of the European championship. * , and – Dedicated UEFA EURO 2012 and 2016 sections featuring highlights and video news clips, reports, columns, match previews, player profiles and real-time data.
ADDITIONAL UEFA EVENTS
* and ESPN Deportes will feature the UEFA European Under-21 Championships in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017 on ESPN. * UEFA European Women’s Championship 2013 on and ESPN Deportes.
Scott Guglielmino, ESPN senior vice president, programming and X Games said “ESPN is committed to serving soccer fans with live coverage of the sport’s top events from around the world. We are especially pleased to extend our relationship with UEFA and continue to help build the UEFA European Football Championship brand in the U.S. The successful 2008 tournament proved this is a must-see event, and our ability to deliver EURO live across our services will ensure that fans can access this unique event wherever and whenever they choose.”