In a social media response of the official account of Star Sports Football, Star Sports denounces rights for the Bundesliga in India, hinting the possible withdrawal of the broadcaster from airing the German top-flight in India. Star India earlier had a deal for five seasons with the DFL Sports Enterprises, commercial division of the DFL, the German football league.
“Hi! We do not have the broadcast rights for Bundesliga,” Star Sports Football replied on Twitter when asked about the rumours of not broadcasting Bundesliga in India. The new season of the German top-flight will kick-off in about two weeks. However, the Indian subcontinent will have no means of watching one of the top five leagues in Europe and the home of the Champions League winner.
Earlier reports claim that the previous deal was worth $1.5Mn per season and covered all the territories of the Indian Sub-Continent, including India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Maldives. The existing 5 year deal ended along with the just concluded Bundesliga season. Reports also claim that the German league was in negotiation with Star India for a deal for the upcoming cycle.
According to the sources, the new deal offered by Star India is almost 60% less than the earlier deal. This means the new signing will be in the range of just $600K for the entire territory of the Indian Sub-Continent which is quite a beating for Bundesliga. This cut was caused by the halt of sporting events in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.
In the last few months, Cricket West Indies, Sri Lanka Cricket, New Zealand Cricket Board are in market to either renew their deals with the existing broadcast partners or to sign a new partnership in the Indian market. However, all of those plans were reportedly cut due to the fall in the Indian sports market. Currently WTA, AFC and various others are without broadcast deal in the Indian sub-continent.
It is learnt that the Bundesliga was the first top European league to resume playing in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic in May 17. German football became popular in India, a region of over 1.7 billion people, since Bayern Munich won a treble, including the Champions League. The new German season is set to start on September 11 with the first round of the DFB-Pokal.
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