Sports

La Liga expects to earn more from new TV rights

MADRID — The Spanish league expects to be earning 2.3 billion euros (nearly $2.7 billion) a season from television rights within three seasons, an increase of nearly 40 per cent compared to its current domestic and international deals.

La Liga president Javier Tebas said Tuesday that the new contracts should bring in about 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) from international rights and 1.3 billion euros ($1.5 billion) from domestic rights, if negotiations go as planned.

The league's current deals produced yearly earnings of 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) in Spain and nearly 650 million euros ($758 million) in the international market.

The European contracts will be valid for three consecutive years, while in the rest of the world the terms will remain flexible in length.

The league said it expects the new deals to be phased in between two and three seasons from now.

Improving revenue from TV rights has been a priority for the Spanish league in its fight against the commercial domination of the English Premier League, the most lucrative in European soccer.

The Spanish league last month had to suspend talks on a new rights deal because of the Catalonia political crisis, but Tebas said that the situation has improved and it should not significantly affect negotiations for the new contracts.

The league said that TV audiences of La Liga matches had increased by 24 per cent , and that the number of paid subscribers has also been significantly higher.

Tebas said that La Liga is competing not only against other leagues and sports, but also against entertainment content providers such as HBO and Netflix. He said that the league has to continue to improve the quality of its product so it can keep attracting more viewers.

"The goal is to have each La Liga game to have the same production as a Real Madrid vs. Barcelona," Tebas said.

Tebas also reiterated his belief that Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City have been committing financial fair play irregularities, saying that he is "certain" that the clubs have been cheating.

He also said that the league will finally start using video reviews in matches beginning next season.

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More AP Spanish soccer coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/LaLiga

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