Premier League clubs playing in the UEFA Champions League starting from next season, are in for financial bathing as they are due to earn £25m each courtesy of BT Sports bumper deal of broadcasting European football.
According to SportsMail, BT Sport bid a whopping £897m to win the rights to show every Champions League and
Europa League game for three seasons from 2015, massively outbidding Sky and ITV, who have televised the tournament jointly for more than 20 years.
Both broadcasters were stunned at BT’s bid, Sky saying: “It seems BT chose to pay far in excess of our valuation.’ ITV added: “We were not prepared to pay over the odds.”
The UK live rights for the 2012-2015 seasons inclusive had been won by Sky for £240m and by ITV for around £160m. BT’s knockout bid represents a huge leap in income for European
governing body UEFA of £497m, or £166m in extra income from the British market alone per year.
Supporters too are not left out in the freebies as they will be allowed to watch Champions League games free.
Part of BT’s deal stipulates that some matches must be made available on free-to-air TV, even to non-BT subscribers.
A BT spokesman said: “We will guarantee every British team will be free for everyone at least once.”
Jake Humphrey will be the front man for BT Sport’s coverage of the Champions League in addition to his Barclays Premier League and FA Cup anchorage roles.
Humphrey said: “It’s remarkable news. When BT Sport launched, we said that our coverage would be a game changer and the Champions League will certainly be a game changer both for BT Sport and for our audience.
“For the first time, all the Champions League and Europa League matches will be available in one place and that will make it cheaper to watch, which
“We’ll also have selected matches involving the British clubs and the final free-to-view, which was also important for us.’
He added: ‘This is incredible for me as a football fan. If the seven-year-old Jake Humphrey could see me now.
Humphrey’s only regret is that his club, Norwich won’t appear in Europe anytime soon.
“It was my boyhood dream to present the FA Cup and that came true last night with the Wimbledon versus Coventry game. But in a year-and-a-half’s time, it will be not only the FA Cup and the Premier League, but the Champions League as well, which is the pinnacle of club football.