Football

La Liga announces free-to-air deal with Facebook in India

Spain’s top flight soccer division La Liga has announced a landmark deal with Facebook which will allow viewers in the Indian sub-continent to watch every game over the next three seasons for free on the social network. Francis Maguire reports.

(REUTERS / BSKYB COMPANY HANDOUT / BARCA TV / MANCHESTER CITY VNR) – Spain’s La Liga scored a landmark deal with Facebook on Tuesday,

Allowing its 348 million users on India’s sub-continent,

to watch every Spanish league game over the next three seasons – for free.

Home to the likes of Barcelona’s Lionel Messi –

all 380 La Liga matches will be available on Facebook in eight countries,

including India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

SPORTS MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS LECTURER, LOUGHBOROUGH UNIVERSITY, ELISAVET MANOLI,

“We’ve been expecting that social media, that new media will be the new players on this field. So, it’s not a shock. But I think it’s what we will see more and more in the future. Facebook has already done this. So, it’s a progression, it’s an evolution of the broadcasting field.”

Facebook is trying to keep younger viewers on their platforms.

It first moved into sports streaming in 2017, broadcasting weekly Major League Baseball games.

Amazon also pushed into sports broadcasting this year,

winning the rights to show 20 English Premier League matches a season in Britain.

With aggressive moves like this – the tech giants pose a challenge to more traditional broadcasters like Sky.

SPORTS MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS LECTURER, LOUGHBOROUGH UNIVERSITY, ELISAVET MANOLI,

“The ecosystem of broadcasting is changing rapidly but we have some very strong players already and I don’t know if they will be willing to sit on the side while other broadcasters take their spot. So, we’ll have to wait and see how traditional broadcasters react to this..The next steps will be possibly the crucial ones to determine what the future will be.”

Facebook hasn’t said how much the La Liga deal is worth,

And the games will initially be shown without adverts

But that’s unlikely to remain the case

Trials in advertising on live content in the U.S. may be replicated on its La Liga coverage at a later date.


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