Eighty four matches live matches on TV

A total of eighty four matches from the BOV Premier League and the U*BET FA Trophy will be screened live as from next season after the Malta Football Association awards the television rights for domestic league matches. Details about the tenders which will be issued in the coming days were given during a press conference at the Centenary Hall, Ta’ Qali on Thursday.

MFA Chief Executive Bjorn Vassallo said that there were two separate tenders for television rights – one covering the home matches of the national team and the Under-21 side which is currently in the process of being awarded and one for the television rights for domestic matches.

Public Broadcasting Services submitted the only offer for the national A team and Under-21 national team matches. The Executive Committee will in the coming weeks discuss the offer and eventually decide on the awarding of the contract.

Vassallo explained that the association wants to give the sporting public the possibility of watching the national teams should they be not able to attend the stadia.

As regards the rights for domestic league and trophy matches, the association is trying to find the right balance in order to give clubs a good income from TV rights.

MFA Head of Legal Department Dr Chris Bonnett explained that companies interested in making an offer for the tender covering domestic matches may apply between February 6 and March 2.

The process will be as transparent as possible with the offers opened in front of the interested companies and then the Executive Committee and the Council will start discussions until the tender for the next three years is awarded.

A new concept in the broadcasting of domestic league and trophy matches is the First Pick and Second Pick Matches.

The First Pick Matches contract will give the TV company the possibility of broadcasting 52 live matches, ten more than the current contract. The reason is that the number of BOV Premier League and U*BET FA Trophy matches has increased.

The winning company has to film the game with no less than seven cameras and will have the right to make the first interviews after the game. The company may include two five-second adverts during each half and four jingle adverts.

The minimum offer to be considered should be €130,000.

The Second Pick Matches contract will give the rights to a TV company the rights over another 32 matches – that is one game per week. Like in the other contract, the company may include two five-second adverts during each half and four jingle adverts. However the game could be filmed by just one camera.

Dr Bonnett explained that in order to avoid “ambush marketing”, the company will include clauses in contracts that would not allow direct competitors of Bank of Valletta and Maltco Lotteries from advertising during the screening of these matches. He also explained that the association will be doing its utmost to stop others from putting clips from local matches online on sites like Facebook and Youtube.

Bjorn Vassallo concluded by saying that more live matches would be giving the association’s main sponsors more exposure – something which of maximum importance for companies who are supporting the association.

Photo: Copyright © domenic aquilina