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Bundesliga and BeIN Sports end MENA impasse with new three-year rights deal

German soccer's top flight has been blacked out in region due to piracy concerns and geopolitical tensions.

1 September 2022 Rory Jones

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The German Football League (DLF) has announced a new Bundesliga broadcast partnership with BeIN Sports for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in a new three-year deal.

Coverage of German soccer’s top flight will return to the MENA region following a two-year blackout in the region that began when BeIN opted not to renew its rights deal in 2020 due to piracy concerns and a ban from operating in Saudi Arabia.

The Qatari blockade ended, which also has also reduced the threat of the BeoutQ Saudi state-backed piracy operation,  allowing the Doha-based broadcaster to move for exclusive rights to all 306 Bundesliga fixtures.

The deal, which kicks in immediately, also includes the end-of-season relegation playoffs, the German Supercup and Bundesliga 2, as well as social media clip rights.  

BeIN has maintained rights deals with the DFL in other territories despite the impasse in the MENA region. The pay-TV network has Bundesliga rights in France, Turkey, Australia and New Zealand, with the latest deal meaning BeIN’s German soccer offering now spans 28 territories globally.

“We are delighted to welcome the Bundesliga back to BeIN Sports in the MENA region,” said Mohammed Al-Subaie, chief executive of BeIN MENA.

“As one of the biggest and most significant leagues in world football, we’re proud to give German football fans the best viewing and engagement experiences, while helping German football flourish and grow.

“From the English Premier League, LaLiga, Ligue 1, Uefa competitions, and an unparalleled multi-sports offering, Bundesliga sits alongside the best sports products in the world, as BeIN Sports continues to be the ultimate destination for football and sports fans alike.”

Robert Klein, chief executive of the Bundesliga International, added: “With stars such as reigning African Player of the Year Sadio Mane lighting up the league each week, we look forward to working with BeIN Sports to deliver world-class localised content and showcase the best of the Bundesliga over the next three years to the millions of football fans throughout the region, who can now follow the league as well as their favourite teams and players again.”

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