Turner goes OTT with majority of Champions League coverage

US fans to pay for separate streaming service to watch European soccer.

Turner goes OTT with majority of Champions League coverage

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US broadcasting giant Turner Sports has revealed coverage plans and pricing details for its inaugural coverage of European soccer’s Uefa Champions League and Europa League, with the majority of games to be offered behind a pay wall on the company’s new B/R Live over-the-top (OTT) platform.

Starting with the Uefa Super Cup on 15th August, Turner’s pay-TV channel TNT will carry just 46 Champions League matches, with all remaining fixtures to be shown on B/R Live. In addition, the streaming service will be the only place to watch almost every Europa League game, with the final of the second-tier competition being the only fixture available on TNT.

Turner has also revealed three subscription models for B/R Live, allowing users to choose whether to commit for the entire season, a month, or tune in on a pay-per-match basis. Fans only wanting to watch their team play will be able to pay US$2.99 per match, while the service is also being offered at US$9.99 per month or US$79.99 for the year.

The news has been met with some dismay by US fans, who are unhappy that they will have to pay for a separate streaming service in addition to their cable or satellite subscription. Fox, the previous rights holder for Uefa competitions in the US, last year showed 146 Champions League games and 206 Europa League matches on its linear channels.

Turner secured the rights to the Champions League and Europa League in August last year in a deal reportedly worth an annual US$60 million until the end of the 2020/21 season. To coincide with that announcement, the broadcaster also revealed that it would be partnering with Bleacher Report to launch B/R Live, a standalone sports streaming service, to house the coverage.