Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
1

Media News

ESPN renews football deals, makes ESPN Goals free

By
ESPN logo
ESPN has renewed its exclusive broadcast agreements to Italian, Dutch and Russian football, as well as made its English Premier League goals mobile app free to all users.

The new deals enable ESPN to continue offering live and exclusive coverage of Italian Serie A, as well as the Dutch Eredivisie and the Russian Premier Liga.

ESPN said that it will air at least two matches each week from Italy's top division, alongside Coppa Italia games, and the Italian Super Cup clash between AC Milan and Inter Milan this month. It will also broadcast "dozens" of games each season from the Dutch and Russian top leagues.

The Disney-owned broadcaster, which expanded its UK market position in 2009 following the collapse of Setanta UK, will continue to broadcast magazine programme ESPN Kicks - Serie A, alongside weekly highlights and goals from the Eredivisie and the Russian Premier Liga.

Jeroen Oerlemans, the vice-president of TV channels (EMEA) at ESPN, said: "The renewal of these agreements is an excellent result for all football fans in the UK, giving them access to live and exclusive coverage of some of Europe's leading football leagues and competitions. We are building an excellent portfolio of live football and sport on ESPN."

ESPN snapped up the rights to Serie A, along with German, Dutch and Russian football to bolster the reduction of its English Premier League TV rights down to just 23 games per season in 2010/2011, with Sky holding the remaining 115.

Last month, the broadcaster announced its opening fixtures for the 2011/2012 football season, starting with Newcastle's clash against Arsenal on August 13.

ESPN has also today launched an enhanced version of its ESPN Goals app, the mobile service offering "near live" highlights of all goals during the Premier League season.

The service, now being offered for free, is designed as the first place for fans to see video of all goals and highlights from the 380 games in the Barclays Premier League.

The app will be made available from Apple iTunes, the Android Market, Nokia's OVI Store, the Blackberry App World, and the Windows Phone Marketplace before the start of the new Premier League season.

Users could previously download the app for free to access live scores and news, but they had to pay £1.50 per month to receive the complete video service, including in-match, post-match and customised video clips.

However, ESPN has now decided to make the app "entirely free" to access and instead rely on advertising revenue to fund the service. The broadcaster is confident that it can attract advertisers as its mobile services have grown 177% year-on-year, outpacing the average 43% growth in the mobile sports content market.

"Let's face it, fans are busier than ever and can't be in front of the TV or at the stadium for all the matches as we'd like. At ESPN, we understand that fans want their football wherever they are," said Tom Gleeson, vice president of digital media at ESPN International.

"The new, free ESPN Goals app delivers Premier League fans the essential mobile app, keeping them connected to all the goals and highlights, all season long. In its first season ESPN Goals showed advertisers the audience that they can reach on mobile. In season two we want to connect even more fans to all the goals from every match in the Barclays Premier League."

You May Like

Comments

Loading...