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Brest Bretagne Handball.  Why the Champions League final is not broadcast on a free-to-air channel – Brest Bretagne Handball


Champions League (final). Brest BH – Kristiansand, this Sunday (6 p.m.), in Budapest

This Sunday at 6 p.m., Brest Bretagne Handball will write a new page in the history of French handball. Facing the Norwegians of Kristiansand, the Finistériennes will be the first French women’s club to play in a Champions League final.

A final that it will not be possible to follow on a free-to-air television channel. Eurosport, holder of the rights to the Champions League Final Four, is broadcasting this final, like the two semi-finals of the day before, but only through Eurosport Player, the channel’s online platform, which requires an additional subscription.

“The L’Equipe channel and beIN Sports were interested”

However, the match could have been broadcast on a free channel. It would then have been necessary for the channel in question to find an agreement to broadcast the match in parallel with Eurosport. Which was not the case for this Final Four. “We did everything we could this week to allow unencrypted broadcasting, but the rights belong to the EHF (the European Handball Federation) which sold them to Eurosport Discovery, regrets the president of the French Federation of handball, Philippe Bana. The L’Equipe channel (broadcast in clear) and beIN Sports were interested in broadcasting the match but Eurosport did not wish to resell. It’s damaging for women’s handball ”.

Second obstacle to unencrypted broadcasting: the final of the Handball Champions League (both women and men) is not among the 21 “sporting events of major importance” listed by the decree of 22 December 2004. This list includes the summer and winter Olympic Games, the matches of the French men’s football team, the Tour de France, the six-nation rugby tournament and the European Cup if a club French is in the final. For handball, the men’s and women’s finals of the European and World Championships are concerned if the French team participates.

For these events, the text stipulates that a television channel which has acquired exclusive retransmission rights “may not prevent the retransmission of this event by a free access television service, which must then be complete and guaranteed. live ”. The channel in question must then offer, “at a reasonable price”, the retransmission of these events on free channels. “I am in favor of this list being extended, especially for women’s sport,” points out Philippe Bana.

Contacted, Eurosport confirmed that the Final Four final will be broadcast live only on Eurosport Player, but did not comment on other channels’ approaches to broadcast the match.

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