Major League Soccer and Eurosport today announced a four-year agreement for Eurosport to air MLS matches in all of Eurosport's European territories (except the United Kingdom).
The four-year deal includes exclusive TV and digital rights for all regular-season matches, the AT&T MLS All-Star Game, MLS playoff matches and MLS Cup. Games will be broadcast on both Eurosport and Eurosport 2 and made available through the Eurosport Player, Eurosport’s online subscription service.
"It is a pleasure to be able to announce our support for the long-term vision of MLS," Eurosport Group GEO Peter Hutton said. "We see the recent signings of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard as further proof of the willingness of the league and its owners to invest in globally recognized names. This can only help us grow MLS internationally, where we will look to show the league both live and in prime time to reach the maximum possible European audience. As we continue to improve the quality of Eurosport across the region, the new deal with the MLS is a significant step to increase our live football content as well as a sign of our belief in the potential of the league to continue to grow."
The deal complements the recently announced agreement between MLS and Sky Sports to air games in the United Kingdom. Up to four matches will be shown live each weekend on a combination of Eurosport and Eurosport 2, including one match live at 11 pm Central European Time on Sunday night and one immediately following. A 30-minute matchday preview will be broadcast on Eurosport 2 each Friday in access primetime.
"In what is a milestone season for MLS, we are excited to announce a partnership with Eurosport that will allow us to significantly expand our international footprint," MLS Business Ventures president and managing director Gary Stevenson said in a statement. "Eurosport has built its reputation on delivering world-class content to viewers across Europe, and we’re excited to be their newest partner. With two new expansion clubs, New York City FC and Orlando City SC, global stars like David Villa, Frank Lampard and Kaká set to join the league, and players representing almost 60 countries, 2015 will be an exciting year for MLS."
Matches to be shown live this weekend include the season opener between the defending MLS Cup champions LA Galaxy and Chicago Fire on Eurosport (3 am CET on Saturday) and D.C. United vs. Montreal Impact on Eurosport 2 (9 pm CET on Saturday).
Sunday will feature a doubleheader on Eurosport, beginning with a 9:30 pm CET pregame show that includes interviews with David Villa and Kaká. That leads into Orlando City vs. New York City FC at 10 pm CET and Sporting Kansas City vs. New York Red Bulls at midnight CET.