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Argentine soccer kicks off on cable

TyC, Grupo Clarin team with AFA on deal

BUENOS AIRES — Torneos y Competencias (TyC) and Grupo Clarin have inked with the Argentine Football Assn. to increase spending by 80% on rights to televise professional soccer matches in Argentina, a deal that allows them to air all 10 weekly matches live on pay TV for the first time.

The companies, which hold the rights until 2014 through their jointly owned Television Satelital Codificada (TSC), agreed to pay 180 million pesos ($57.5 million) for the rights this season, up from $32 million last year when they aired four to six matches a week.

They will air half the matches on their TyC Sports feevee, which is carried by cablers and satcasters on basic plans that cost subscribers an average $24-$28.80 a month.The big matches, like those involving the favorite clubs of Boca Juniors and River Plate, will go on the partners’ premium channel TyC Max for an extra $6.40-$8.32 per month for subs.

The season kicks off Fridaywith Colon going up against Velez Sarsfield.

Two matches will be played Friday and the rest divided evenly between Saturday and Sunday, making it easy for scheduling between TyC-Group Clarin’s basic and premium channels. Previously, the majority of matches aired Sunday.

Grupo Clarin, the country’s biggest media conglom, has interests in Cablevision, Multicanal and Supercanal, the three biggest cablers with around 65% of the country’s 5.3 million subs.

Argentina is the most cabled market in Latin America, with more than half of TV homes connected.

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