Uncertainty remains over German TV rights to additional Nations League matches

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - MARCH 24: Nico Schulz of Germany celebrates scoring his teams third goal of the game (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Following on from format changes to Uefa’s Nations League in the 2020-21 tournament, discussions are ongoing in Germany over the broadcast home of two matches that the national team will play.

The Uefa Executive Committee met in September last year and took the decision to alter the league structure of the group stages of the tournament, including the switch from three-team to four-team groups in League A.

This means that the German national team, like all other League A and League B sides, will now play a guaranteed six group-stage matches, rather than the four it played in the 2018-19 tournament.

Public-service broadcasters ARD and ZDF initially acquired rights to 12 German national team matches in the current 2018-19 to 2021-22 cycle. This initially included rights to the four group-stage matches in each Nations League edition, and then two additional matches per tournament dependent on the success of the national team.

As it turned out, the German team did not qualify for the 2018-19 Final Four semi-finals, and therefore ARD and ZDF were provided with rights instead to two friendlies played by Germany in March.

RTL holds rights to 28 Germany national team matches – 20 European qualifiers and eight friendlies – in a four-season deal with Uefa, from 2018-19 to 2021-22. The additional Nations League matches are now included in the RTL deal.

It is thought that Uefa is working with ARD, ZDF and RTL to negotiate the public-service broadcasters taking over the two Nations League matches and RTL receiving the rights to the March friendlies.

All rights deals were struck on behalf of Uefa by CAA Eleven, its sales agent for its national-team competition rights. DAZN, the OTT subscription platform, holds third-party rights to Nations League matches not involving Germany.

There are 14 groups in the upcoming 2020-21 tournament, of which only one (League D2) will comprise three teams in. In the 2018-19 tournament there was 16 groups, including nine pools comprised of three teams.