SYDNEY: Fox Sports and News Corp Australia have secured a A$346m broadcast rights deal with the Football Federation Australia (FFA) that represents the biggest investment of its kind in Australian soccer.
Under the terms of the deal, which was announced by the FFA in a statement, Fox Sports will have the right to broadcast all A-League matches over the next six years as well as Socceroos, Matildas, W-League and FFA cup matches.
Commencing on July 1, 2017, the new deal totals A$346m, which the FFA said was more than double the current arrangements on a like-for-like basis.
FFA Chairman Steven Lowy said the new deal represented a great leap forward for football in Australia and it meant there could be more investment at grassroots level and in the women's game.
"Football has always been the World Game but it is now also entrenched as a mainstream Australian sport, with deep connections to Asia, the fastest-growing region in the world," he said.
"Our game has never seen a deal of this magnitude before. This six-year agreement gives us the certainty to continue to implement our strategy to grow the Hyundai A-League and the Westfield W-League and invest more in grassroots football development and the women's game," he added.
The deal amounts to A$57.6m a year, although it excludes the broadcast rights to final round Socceroos World Cup qualifying matches, the Asian Cup and the Asian Champions League, which are controlled by the Asian Football Confederation and separately owned by Fox Sports and Foxtel.
Also commenting on the deal, FFA Chief Executive David Gallop said: "We have seen the enormous impact that our current marketing and marquee player strategies are having. This year TV audiences, crowds and club memberships are all up and it is our intention to re-double our efforts in these areas under the new deal.
"The new arrangements will benefit all areas of football in Australia, but in particular the A-League clubs and players who will receive additional funding as a result of today's announcement."
Data sourced from FFA; additional content by Warc staff