Paramount+ Lands Exclusive Streaming Rights to the Asian Football Confederation
In a statement released on Thursday, ViacomCBS confirmed it reached a multi-platform agreement with the AFC for its platforms, including Paramount+, to serve as the exclusive U.S. home of AFC’s world-class competitions including the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar Final Round, AFC Champions League, AFC Women’s Asian Cup 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023. The AFC is home to teams across Northern Africa, Mainland Asia, the Asian Pacific Islands, and Oceania. Its current Champions League winner is Ulsan Hyundai, a South Korean club.
Paramount+ will deliver more than 300 club and national team matches live through 2024, including the AFC Asian Qualifiers – Road to Qatar Final Round in September, with the competition continuing in 2022. Paramount+ coverage also includes the remainder of the 2021 AFC Champions League from the Knockout Stage matches through the Final in November. The service will be the home of the AFC Men’s Champions League each season through 2024.
While the press release mentions a “multi-platform agreement,” there was no mention of games airing on the linear CBS or CBS Sports Network but did indicate the league would have a presence on CBS Sports Digital, and CBS Sports HQ, where fans can find additional coverage and original programming and feature highlights across social channels.
Paramount+ is a subscription video streaming service that includes on-demand access to 12,000+ TV show episodes including originals Star Trek: Discovery, Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants, and MTV’s Laguna Beach. Meet captivating characters, catch up on your favorite sport, explore new worlds in the growing collection of Paramount+.
Previously under the name ‘CBS All Access,’ Subscribers can choose between their Essentials Plan (which includes ads) for $4.99/month, or go commercial-free with their Premium Plan for $9.99/month.
With their Premium Plan, in addition to not having ads, you will also get access to your local CBS affiliate to stream your local news, prime-time line-up, and late-night. You will also be able to download offline and watch select shows in 4K.
With the lower cost “Essential” plan, you will still be able to watch live NFL games, Champions League, and national news – but you will no longer get your local CBS affiliate like the old ad-supported plan.
With their new app, enjoy advanced recommendations, curated homepages, and new content categories while still being able to stream major live sports like NFL, College Football, College Basketball. Sports fans will also appreciate the service’s inclusion of NFL on CBS, PGA Tour, along with every match of UEFA Champions League and Serie A.
“The addition of Asian Football further elevates our extensive lineup of live soccer coverage on Paramount+, highlighted by elite club competition and some of the top national teams across both the men’s and women’s international game,” said Jeffrey Gerttula, Executive Vice President and General Manager, CBS Sports Digital. “Offering matches from this expansive region provides even more value by delivering year-round soccer coverage at a time of day when the sport traditionally isn’t offered to American fans.”
When CBS All Access was rebranded to Paramount+, ViacomCBS execs promised a major focus on soccer — and it’s clear they meant it. ViacomCBS already owns the U.S. broadcast rights to UEFA Champions League, Europa League, Europa Conference League, Serie A, NWSL, Concacaf, Brazil’s Campeonato Brasileiro Série A, and Argentina’s Liga Profesional de Futbol.
Dato’ Windsor John, the AFC general secretary said: “The AFC is delighted to enter into this partnership with CBS Sports, which represents another progressive step towards increasing the visibility and consumption of the AFC’s competitions beyond our Continent. We look forward to working with CBS Sports in growing the fanbase of the AFC’s world-class competitions in the vibrant North American market as well as in the AFC’s territories in Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands, and we thank them for believing in the future of Asian football.”