Virgin Media expands Sky Sports carriage

football-luizVirgin Media has made its deal for carriage of Sky Sports channels for the coming year, putting further pressure on BT to do a deal with the satellite broadcaster before the next football season kicks off in August.

Virgin Media’s agreement to carry Sky Sports 1 and 2 was negotiated in 2010 and due to expire this summer, but will now extend into next year.

“We have surity through 2013,” Virgin Media chief executive Neil Berkett said. “I’m comfortable with where we are in terms of continuity and surity of supply.”

By contrast, BT is struggling to agree terms to carry Sky’s two main sports channels on its service. The telco has a deal until 2016 to carry Sky Sports 1 and 2 on its BT Vision box, but that service is being phased out in favour of YouView.

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