BT outbids Sky, ITV for Champions League rights

BT outbids Sky, ITV for Champions League rights
© PA Photos
BT Sport are reportedly in advanced talks to secure Champions League rights on a three-year contract from 2015, pipping ITV and Sky to that position.

BT Sport have reportedly launched a bid worth around £1bn for the right to show Champions League and Europa League matches from 2015, beating Sky and ITV to enter exclusive talks with UEFA over a deal.

All three broadcasters have tendered bids for a three-year contract which begins in 2015, with the current deal exclusive to Sky and ITV due to expire at that point.

BT are thought to have outbid their rivals earlier this week and are confident of confirming a provisional deal with UEFA in the next few days, according to The Times.

Sky and ITV currently pay a combined £400m for exclusive Champions League rights in the United Kingdom, a contract they have shared since 2008.

ITV has shown Europe's elite club competition on terrestrial television since the tournament's inception in 1992, but now a face fight to maintain that relationship.

During the last 12 months BT have made an aggressive push into the market by paying £738 m to show 38 live Premier League matches across the next three seasons, attempting to challenge Sky's dominance of the pay-TV subscription model in the United Kingdom.

Celtic's Northern Irish manager Neil Lennon reacts during the UEFA Champions League Group H football match between Celtic and Ajax at Celtic Park in Glasgow, Scotland, on October 22, 2013
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