Eleven Sports will keep La Liga rights but loses Serie A and Eredivisie to Premier Sports

Eleven Sports announced in a statement on Wednesday morning that it will no longer carry coverage of Serie A and Eredivisie football in the UK and Ireland, but will continue to broadcast La Liga action until at least the end of the season, “with the intention of continuing beyond,” according to the global OTT broadcaster.

Broadcaster Premier Sports will now assume control of exclusive Serie A and Eredivisie rights beginning 1st March.

“At this stage, our priorities lie with our subscribers who we hope will experience minimal disruption as a result of these developments,” Eleven Sports said in a statement.

The company burst onto the scene in the UK in 2018 securing rights deals with La Liga, the PGA Tour and UFC as it sought to build its UK portfolio up to the levels of its other global offerings, which include the likes of Formula One, UFC and the Premier League among others in other territories.

Yet while the company has seldom had trouble finding rights agreements and subscribers, their UK operation took a hit when they lost UFC rights at the end of last year. In that case, the agreement fell through after the company failed to reign in promised distribution on pay-TV platforms such as BT, Sky and Virgin Media and the mixed martial arts promotional company returned its business to BT instead.

Premier Sports will begin airing Serie A and Eredivisie football in February, and will allow Eleven Sports to continue to broadcast both leagues through to the end of the month, with the final Serie A match on the platform coming on the 25th. Current Eleven Sports subscribers will be offered a special promotion to join Premier Sports when the switch becomes official. The company has also announced that it will reduce its monthly pass to £4.99 beginning March 1st to reflect the loss of rights.

La Liga now becomes Eleven Sports’ sole exclusive football coverage within the UK and Ireland.

“The strategic direction we have chosen allows us to focus on LaLiga which not only drives real value for us in the UK and Ireland, but is also a property which we continue to have a valued partnership with in five markets globally,” the statement said. “We will continue to look for new rights opportunities to complement action from the Spanish league.”

The decision from Eleven Sports now adds to the growing difficulty of viewing top flight football within UK and Ireland. In order to watch Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, Bundesliga and Ligue 1 football, along with domestic and European cup competitions, fans must now hold subscriptions to a host of different broadcasters including Sky, BT Sport, Eleven Sports and Premier Sports as fragmentation becomes an increasing problem for consumers.

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