FOOTBALL: Sky Sports secures live home nations qualifiers for Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018

Sky Sports has been awarded the rights to screen all home nations and Republic of Ireland qualification matches for Euro 2016 and the 2018 World Cup.

The new agreement with UEFA provides Sky Sports with live coverage all Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland games, together with highlights of England qualifiers and a selection of live matches featuring non-home nation sides.

In a seperate announcement, Sky Sports has officially confirmed it will screen this summer’s European Under-21 Championships in Israel exclusively live.

From September 2014 onwards, Sky Sports will screen up to 500 competitive international matches over the four-year rights cycle, underlining the broadcaster’s commitment to being the home of live televised football.

The deal comprises of exclusive live coverage of all qualifiers – home and away – featuring Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

For the first time since 2008, Sky Sports will screen regular highlights of England qualifiers, alongside the live rights won by ITV.

Should England play other home nations in these qualifying campaigns then home nations’ home tie against the Three Lions will be broadcast live on Sky.

In addition, Sky Sports will screen qualifying matches featuring non-home nation teams, starting with Euro 2016 qualification fixtures in September 2014.

This new rights deal is the first to be negotiated under UEFA’s new central rights sales strategy, in which the rights to all qualifying matches held in Europe are packaged and sold by the governing body.

Both Sky and ITV have secured respective deals to screen all the key games during the next four-year period.

For the pay-TV sports giant, this deal ensures that it has successfully kept new challenger BT Sport away from showing any competitive internationals involving the home nations until at least 2018.

Sky Sports managing director Barney Francis said: “Both the UEFA European Championship and FIFA World Cup are football’s most important international tournaments and this deal offers Sky Sports viewers the complete qualification story. 

“We’ve been broadcasting international football since the beginning of Sky Sports and this deal means our viewers can enjoy watching some of the best players and nations over the next four years. 

“There has never been a better time to be a Sky Sports subscriber, with an unrivalled breadth of sport offered across six different channels.

“This year our viewers can enjoy The British & Irish Lions Tour, back-to-back Ashes Series, the ICC Champions Trophy, every race live in the F1 season, Super League, US Open & US PGA Golf, Andy Murray defending his US Open title and of course our biggest ever season of football.”

In a seperate deal, Sky Sports has also won the rights to broadcast all 2013 UEFA European Under-21 Championship matches exclusively live, adding to this summer’s exciting schedule of sport.

The tournament, which features Europe’s brightest young stars from England and seven other nations, kicks off on June 5.

Taking place in Israel, coverage will include all group matches, both semi-finals, and the final itself on June 18.

The wider football schedule on Sky Sports includes 116 fixtures from the Barclays Premier League – three quarters of all live matches and more than ever before.

There is also over 120 UEFA Champions League fixtures, 75 npower Football League fixtures, the Capital One Cup, over 100 fixtures from La Liga, Clydesdale Bank Premier League, William Hill Scottish Cup and much more screened on Sky Sports throughout the season.

2 Responses to FOOTBALL: Sky Sports secures live home nations qualifiers for Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018

  1. Stephen says:

    Will BBC NI, BBC Scotland and BBC Wales still have highlights

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