Anticipation is building for the decision on the next Premier League U.S. media rights. Final bids have to be submitted by Thursday. With this in mind, expect an announcement soon after.
One of the bidders is NBCUniversal, home of both NBC Sports and Telemundo Deportes. As a result, both the English-language and Spanish-language broadcasters are hopeful that the rights can be renewed. Consequently, it would mean six more seasons of Premier League coverage if the Premier League agrees to renew the deal. ESPN, among others, will be hoping for an upset.
While the Premier League rights are important to NBC Sports, they are too for Telemundo. But, for a different reason. Telemundo has the Spanish-language rights to World Cup 2022 and 2026. Consequently, renewing the Premier League deal will be an ideal vehicle to cross-promote its World Cup coverage, and vice-versa.
On Tuesday, Telemundo held on a conference call with members of the U.S. soccer media. During which, Telemundo’s top sports executive shared more insight.
Specifically, President of Telemundo Deportes Ray Warren said,
“We are as confident as all of the other bidders who will be making a very large second offer.
I do think we have an incumbent advantage. We elevated the Premier League to a place that I don’t think [NBC Sports] thought possible nine years ago when we first signed on.
The company at the highest levels knows that it’s very important sports league to own the rights to.”
Faced with tough competition, Univision is one of the other broadcasters bidding for Spanish-language rights.
World Cup a priority for NBC Sports, too
Despite NBCUniversal not having the English-language rights to the competition, NBC Sports is a factor. For instance, during the last World Cup, NBCSN did broadcast some of the World Cup games in Spanish-language to boost ratings.
Whereas the World Cup is a huge priority, NBCUniversal will be hoping for six more years of Premier League coverage. Joined with the World Cup, it is the perfect combination.
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