World Cup and Euros to remain on free TV

Frank Dalleres
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FOOTBALL’S major international tournaments will continue to be shown on free-to-air broadcasters such as the BBC and ITV beyond 2014 after the game’s governing bodies lost a legal challenge.

The European Court of Justice yesterday rejected an appeal from Fifa and Uefa and upheld a 2011 ruling that prevents rights for the World Cup and European Championships being sold only to pay-TV firms.

World governing body Fifa and their European counterparts Uefa had argued that the ruling prevented them from selling the rights for their true value.

A decision on whether the Qatar 2022 World Cup is to be switched to winter is expected to be made on 3 or 4 October, when Fifa president Sepp Blatter discusses the matter with his executive committee.

Blatter has said he is in favour of moving the tournament to avoid playing in temperatures of up to 50C, but the Premier League is opposed as the switch would mean disruption to the domestic season.

The Football League yesterday named Sky Bet as its title sponsor in a three-year deal believed to be worth around £260m.