WOMEN’S SUPER LEAGUE SEALS MAJOR NEW DEAL WITH BBC AND SKY
Top women’s football action will be shown regularly on free-to-air UK TV after the FA Women’s Super League sealed a breakthrough deal with the BBC and Sky.
The BBC will show at least 18 games a season live on BBC One and BBC Two in what the corporation hailed as an “historic” deal. The BBC already shows live WSL games, but usually only through the BBC iPlayer, BBC Sport online and the BBC red button service.
The new arrangements will also see Sky Sports show at least 35 live matches a season taking over from BT Sport which currently holds the rights. Sky will get the top picks of each round of fixtures, showing two games each weekend.
Officials in the women’s game believe the three-year deal could have a huge impact in raising the profile of the league after crucially securing matches on the BBC’s two major channels rather than just the previous digital and subscription-only offering. Sky are expected to throw significant resources at promoting their coverage as well and “selling” the women’s game to its football audiences in a further boost.
Sky Sports boss Rob Webster said: “Our goal is to bring our customers more of what they love and we are certain the WSL will be a success with our football-hungry viewers.”
Director of BBC Sport Barbara Slater said: “This is fantastic news for sports fans and for women’s football. We are delighted to offer the WSL a free-to-air platform to ensure the sport, and the players, connect with the widest possible audience.”
Football Association officials described the deal as “game changing”. The new arrangements start when next season gets underway in September.
HOW THE DEAL BREAKS DOWN
– at least 18 LIVE matches a season on BBC One and BBC Two with a further four on BBC Sport online, BBC iPlayer and BBC red button (the BBC One/Two games will also be on BBC Sport online and iPlayer).
– highlights and goals from all games across The Women’s Football Show, BBC Sport online and social channels.
– at least 35 games LIVE a season – with up to 44 potentially being shown.
– Sky promising the “full Sky Sports treatment with lengthy build-ups and reaction to all live matches, plus daily news across Sky Sports News and digital platforms.”
– Games will be shown across Sky Sports Football, Sky Sports Premier League and Sky Sports Main Event.
– Some games will be simulcast for non-sports subscribers across Sky One and Sky Sports Mix.
TV GAMES KICK-OFF TIMES
Fridays 6.30pm, Saturdays 11.30am, Sunday 12.30pm & 6.30pm.
Games not selected by Sky Sports or the BBC will be shown live on the FA Player.