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ESPN secures archive World Cup footage

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ESPN secures archive World Cup footage
ESPN has agreed a new multi-channel deal with FIFA to broadcast archive matches and programming from over 70 years of World Cup Finals.

Under the multi-year deal, ESPN and ESPN Classic will screen footage from the first World Cup tournament in 1930 right up to the most recent event in 2006.

From today, the channels will screen 150 classic matches, along with 14 official FIFA films dating from 1930 to 2002. Both channels will also carry the hour-long Top 20 FIFA World Cup Moments programme and the FIFA World Cup Stories six-episode series.

"With the 2010 FIFA World Cup just around the corner we are pleased to add more first class international football content to the channels," said Jeroen Oerlemans, ESPN EMEA vice president, TV channels.

"With 150 classic matches on ESPN and ESPN Classic, fans will be able to see some of the greatest ever football games played at the world's legendary FIFA World Cup tournaments. The FIFA Films archive helps us deliver top quality archive football to a wide audience across Europe, the Middle East and Africa."

FIFA's director of TV Niclas Ericson added: "We are proud of this deal primarily because it will benefit fans of soccer as well as the sport itself.

"Opening up the FIFA Film Archives to a global broadcaster will allow viewers access to classic footage from the very first World Cup right up to the present, and keep the passion for the sport alive long after the final whistle at the FIFA World Cup."

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