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Sky Sports keen to secure rights to broadcast WSL

Sky Sports keen to secure rights to broadcast Women’s Super League matches next season

September 30, 2020 By Juan Aguerrevere
Sky Sports is expected to secure the rights of the FA WSL from next season after the broadcaster made a substantial offer that might see them take all the coverage from BT Sport.

The offer comes after a multitude of high-profile women footballers arrived at the Barclays FA Women’s Super League during the transfer window.  

Reports of the expected deal came just weeks after NBC, owned by Sky’s parent company, Comcast, acquired the rights to broadcast England’s topflight women’s league in the United States. Sky Sports grew interested after the FA developed a new strategy to increase revenue with the help of Women’s Sports Group, a rights management specialist agency.  

FA-controlled women’s football club and national team fixtures were made available for the 2021-22 campaign and beyond for the first time. Sky are believed to have outbid other broadcasters for most of the packages, according to Telegraph Sport. However, Sky Sports are not commenting on the matter at this time. 

The FA had never tried to sell the rights of England’s first division women’s league since the launch of the Women’s Super League in 2011. The rights for the competition were given to BBC and BT Sport for free, with the broadcasters covering production costs with the goal to find the largest possible audience for potential TV rights revenue. 

After a wave of top-tier transfers made their way into the FA WSL and the FA finally attempting to monetize the television rights for the league, Sky Sports wants all-in. More than two million people tuned in to watch BBC’s Women’s Football Show after the sport made its return from its absence due to COVID-19. 

The most notable transfers have been Alex Morgan from the Orlando Pride to Tottenham Hotspurs, Sam Mewis from the North Carolina Courage to Manchester City, Rose Lavelle from OL Reign to Manchester City, Christen Press from the Utah Royals to Manchester United, Tobin Heath from the Portland Thorns to Manchester United and Pernille Harder from VfB Wolfsburg to Chelsea. 

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