The Champions League trophy (file pic). Alamy Stock Photo
Done Deal

RTÉ and Premier Sports secure Irish TV Champions League rights from 2024

Virgin Media, meanwhile, say they are ‘currently working with Uefa to finalise an extensive range of rights’.

PREMIER SPORTS will have the first choice of Tuesday’s Champions League games in Ireland from next season onwards, a move which will take a number of high-profile fixtures off free-to-air TV.

RTÉ confirmed to The 42 that they have also renewed their Champions League deal in the upcoming rights package, which covers the 2024/25 to 2027/28 seasons. While they have not yet released any details of their coverage, it is expected that they will have the first choice of the Wednesday games. Premier Sports will also have the rights to show a Wednesday game.

Meanwhile, Virgin Media, who are expected to broadcast over 160 games from the competition, this afternoon told The 42: “We are currently working with Uefa to finalise an extensive range of rights for the Uefa Champions League Seasons 2024/25 to 2027/28 and will be in a position to make an announcement soon.”

In recent seasons, Virgin Media have had the first choice of the Wednesday games, while RTÉ have held the rights for the first-choice Tuesday games.

The first-choice Tuesday slot is particularly coveted among Irish broadcasters over the next three seasons given the new makeup of the British TV rights deal.

Across the water, Amazon have first pick of the Tuesday game and owing to the channel’s limited reach in Ireland, the match in question is expected to be a bigger draw on Irish broadcast TV.

TNT Sports, formerly BT Sport, have retained the Wednesday game as well as the rest of the rights to the Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League.

Meanwhile, Premier Sports have also secured the rights to Europa League and Europa Conference League group-stage games, meaning should an Irish side qualify, they will have sole rights on these shores, though the qualifying games are not part of the deal and as usual will be independently handled.

In addition, Premier Sports will have coverage of all the highlights from all matches in both competitions and accompanying magazine programming.

Commenting on this new agreement, the founder of Premier Sports Michael O’Rourke said: “We are delighted to have secured such a comprehensive suite of rights in this process making Premier Sports the destination channels for Uefa’s premium club competitions from August next year. The Uefa European club competitions are appointment to view for the Irish sporting public and we look forward to providing compelling and engaging coverage of these premium events.”

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