Belgian telecom firms, Proximus and Telenet, have successfully secured a package of rights to the UEFA club competitions for the upcoming three-year cycle. This move will significantly impact the sports broadcasting landscape in Belgium.
The two operators will provide co-exclusive coverage of the top-tier UEFA Champions League fixtures (UCL) through to the 2026-2027 season. This means that both companies will share broadcasting rights, allowing their respective subscribers access to these highly anticipated matches.
Proximus has renewed its agreement for pay-television rights to UCL but has lost its exclusivity. The telecom group will continue providing coverage on its Pickx digital TV service for seasons 2024-25, 2025-26, and 2026-27.
Telenet will be the exclusive rights holder for the Europa League and Europa Conference
Telenet has managed to secure exclusive rights to broadcast Europa League matches and Europa Conference League (to be renamed as Conference League from 2024-25). All matches from these two competitions will be shown live exclusively on Play Media or Play Sports in Flanders.
Moreover, Telenet is set to show all three UEFA club competitions for the period between 2024 and 27 with matches aired on its Play Sports TV channel.
Last week saw free-to-air (FTA) Champions League rights in Belgium retained by incumbent partners RTL (French language) and VTM (Dutch language). These channels have been instrumental in bringing football action into Belgian homes over previous seasons.
The UCL’s current format will undergo significant changes for 2024-25. Instead of being split into multiple groups from which teams qualify for the knockout stage, it will take on a new single-league structure. The competition will expand from 32 to 36 teams and incorporate 189 matches instead of the previous 125.
The tender process for the next UEFA competition cycle is on for the sub-Saharan Africa region
UEFA has recently opened a tender process for its club competitions in sub-Saharan Africa with a bid deadline set for December 11. This move indicates UEFA's intention to broaden its global audience reach, offering more fans access to Europe's premier football competitions.
These developments mark an exciting time for sports fans and sports betting enthusiasts alike in Belgium as they can look forward to more comprehensive coverage of their favorite European soccer tournaments.