Sogecable acquires rights to Euro 2008

From David Del Valle in Madrid

Sogecable has acquired the exclusive rights to broadcast the Euro 2008 football tournament in Spain. The pay-TV group will broadcast all 31 matches on its digital DTH platform Digital Plus, with all games featuring the Spanish national team being available on its free-to-air channel Cuatro, with a nation wide coverage.

The move comes at a time when the fight with Mediapro, shareholder in La Sexta, over TV rights to the Spanish Football League, is intensifying. The latest episode of this battle comes from a Spanish court decision, ordering Mediapro to comply strictly with the deal reached with Sogecable back in 2006, which prevented the company from exploiting TV rights to football teams outside the deal.

Audiovisual Sport, owned by Sogecable with a 80 per cent stake, had accused Mediapro of breaking that contract, giving rise to the present legal battle. The ruling is the latest in the dispute between the two over the TV rights for Spanish football's Primera Liga.

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