Australians will be able to satisfy most of their football needs in one place after Football Australia announced a ground-breaking broadcast deal that packages non-World Cup Socceroos and Matildas games with a suite of domestic football.
FA has entered into a deal with 10 ViacomCBS, reportedly worth $100m, to televise a wide range of football until the end of 2024, including all national team games outside the World Cup finals, the Asian Cup and the FFA Cup.
It ties into Ten’s five-year $200m deal for A-League and W-League rights that was brokered last month, making a total investment of $300m in the sport.
The content will be available on free-to-air channels Ten, 10 Bold and 10 Play, as well as on Paramount+, the subscription streaming service which will be available in Australia from 11 August. Paramount+ will cost subscribers $8.99 per month.
Broadcast rights to the 2023 Women’s World Cup on home soil are held by Optus Sport, but all Matildas games at the tournament will be shown on free-to-air TV courtesy of a sub-licensing deal with a to-be-decided commercial network. Ten is one of a number of potential bidders.
The FA CEO, James Johnson, lauded Tuesday’s deal as a “wonderful result for our game” that would provide greater financial certainty following the economic impacts of Covid.
“This is an enormous vote of confidence in the future direction of football in Australia, including the bold 15-year vision and strategic agenda we have set for the game,” Johnson said.
“This is the first time Football Australia has been able to secure a direct broadcast deal of this nature with a commercial free-to-air partner, which provides the game with vital exposure on the primary channels of Network 10 and a variety of other platforms, including the soon to be launched Paramount+.”
The new broadcasting direction for football comes with Fox Sports’ involvement in the game coming to end when its deal expires in July. Fox’s departure after 15 years had prompted fears of a fractured media landscape but Tuesday’s announcement appears to have allayed any concern.