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Pitch cements FA relationship in deal for Women’s Super League worldwide rights

Kim Little and Leah Williamson of Arsenal (Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images)

The Pitch International agency has been appointed by England’s Football Association to exclusively distribute worldwide broadcast rights to the FA Women’s Super League.

Pitch said today (Friday) that it won the tender process held by the FA after its negotiation of three international broadcast deals for the league in recent months.

The agency added: “Now representing the exclusive global rights, excluding UK and Republic of Ireland, Pitch has the opportunity to build on the 13 overseas territories it’s already generated.”

Ahead of the new WSL season, the agency struck deals with Sky Mexico (in Mexico, Central America and the Dominican Republic) and Nordic Entertainment Group (in the Nordic region). The two contracts run from 2019-20 to 2021-22 and are worth “six-figure revenue” in rights fees.

Last month, telecoms operator Optus secured the WSL rights, also for three seasons, in the league’s first rights deal in the Asia-Pacific region.

Outside of the countries in which Pitch has secured WSL broadcast deals, there is live streaming available of matches on The FA Player, the association’s OTT platform. The service is offering free coverage of over 150 women’s football fixtures throughout the 2019-20 season.

Tom Gracey, The FA’s senior broadcast manager said today that the league is “going from strength to strength and Pitch’s network will allow us to continue The FA WSL’s exciting growth, taking the league to more fans around the world”.

Henri Kamerling, managing director of sales at Pitch International, noted that the agency is “proud to be able to help drive women’s football forward and optimistic about opening up further opportunities for The FA WSL”.

He added: “It’s been a big year for the Women’s Sport Division since its launch earlier this year and this represents another exciting development.”

In April, the agency acquired the rights to the W-Series, the all-female motorsport series, and has distributed the rights to over 110 territories in the first year.

Pitch is also well known to the FA through its sale of men’s FA Cup broadcast rights in Western Europe and the Middle East and North Africa. The agency acquired the rights from 2018-19 to 2023-24, having also sold international rights (in selected regions) to the competition during the previous six-season cycle.