TV2 Norway sews up five-year LaLiga rights deal

Norway's Martin Odegaard of Real Sociedad in action against Barcelona (Photo by Silvestre Szpylma/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Norwegian commercial and pay-television broadcaster TV2 has secured exclusive rights to Spain’s LaLiga from 2021-22 to 2025-26.

The five-year deal comes after LaLiga, the governing body for the top two tiers of Spanish domestic football, was given authorisation to sell future broadcast rights in Europe for more than three seasons in amends made to the Royal Decree that governs the sale of centralised rights.

The agreement follows hot on the heels of TV2’s namesake in Denmark finalising the acquisition of LaLiga rights for five years, also until the end of the 2025-26 campaign.

TV2’s exclusive deal in Norway will bring to an end the coverage of LaLiga on Strive, the OTT subscription service of IMG. The agency secured the rights across Scandinavia from 2018-19 to 2020-21 but went on to sell rights to three matches per round to TV2.

TV2 has acquired the rights to all 380 matches per season but is yet to announce how the output will be split across it various free-to-air and pay-television linear and streaming platforms.

Olav T. Sandnes, TV2’s editor-in-chief, said: “Even in the corona crisis, it is important to think long-term to ensure the best content on TV 2’s platforms. This is an exclusive deal for one of the most important football rights in the market.

“With teams like Barcelona and Real Madrid, as well as world-class players [like] Lionel Messi and our own Martin Ødegaard in key roles, this will be an exciting league to follow in the years to come.”

The deal helps to compensate for TV2’s recent loss of Premier League rights after Nordic Entertainment (Nent) Group’s landed the rights across the Nordic region (from 2022-23 to 2027-28).

However, TV2 was recently buoyed by a Uefa Champions League rights deal in Norway (from 2021-22 to 2023-24) after Nent lost out on retaining the contract. TV2 currently sublicenses non-exclusive rights from Nent to 30 Champions League matches per season).

In February, LaLiga issued an invitation to tender for the top-tier LaLiga and second-tier LaLiga Smartbank covering 16 territories, including Norway. The first-round bid deadline was March 16 with LaLiga working with the Barcelona-headquartered Mediapro agency during the tender process.

Successful bidders are required to broadcast a minimum of three live matches per first division match week and weekly broadcasts of LaLiga’s highlights and magazine shows. LaLiga also required that a minimum of one second-division match be broadcast per matchweek as well as its equivalent highlights show.