ESPN, ESPN+ Ink Deal to Retain Rights to Top Spanish Soccer Competitions
ESPN announced this week that it has re-upped its deal for the U.S. rights to the Copa del Rey and Supercopa de España, the two biggest soccer competitions in Spain. Both are under the auspices of the Royal Spanish Football Federation.
Thanks to the deal, all 65 Copa del Rey matches will stream on ESPN+ and will be broadcast in English, with 30 matches streaming in Spanish. The Supercopa de España matches will appear on ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and ESPN+.
The Copa del Rey is a season-long competition featuring more than 100 clubs at different levels of Spanish soccer, while the Supercopa de España is a smaller tournament, featuring the winners and runners-up of the Copa del Rey and LaLiga. LaLiga, to which ESPN also holds the U.S. rights, is the main Spanish top-flight league.
The Copa del Rey knockout competition begins in October, while the Supercopa de España is played each year in January.
The defending Copa del Rey champion is Real Betis, who defeated Valencia. The most recent Supercopa de España was won by Real Madrid, who defeated Athletic Bilbao, who had won the competition the previous year.
“Copa del Rey and Spanish Super Cup, together with LaLiga, are the three jewels of Spanish soccer,” Sonia Gomez, ESPN senior director for programming and acquisitions, said in the company’s announcement. “Having these three premier properties cements ESPN+ as the home for Spanish soccer in the U.S. and reinforces our position as the country’s leading media destination for soccer fans.”
With the new deal, the worldwide leader in sports announced that ESPN+ will now show approximately 2,000 soccer matches each year, including competitions from Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, Mexico, and the United States. While NBC and Peacock hold the U.S. rights to the English Premier League, ESPN does feature some English soccer, including the FA Cup, the Carabao Cup, and the second-flight English Football League.
When the World Cup is played later this year, Fox Sports will have the U.S. streaming rights in English — with games available on-demand upon their completion on Tubi — with Peacock streaming the matches in Spanish.
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