Facebook has scored more live sports for its growing entertainment play: Fox Sports reached a deal with the social giant to stream free matches from the UEFA Champions League — Europe’s top soccer tournament — during the 2017-18 season to U.S. users.
Under the terms of the deal, Fox Sports will stream UEFA Champions League matches in the U.S. on the Fox Sports Facebook Page, and in Spanish on the Fox Deportes Facebook Page, beginning in September during group stage competition.
The deal will bring more sports to Facebook Live, after the company’s recent live-streaming pacts including with Major League Baseball, the U.S.’s Major League Soccer and Univision for Liga MX matches.
On its Facebook pages, Fox Sports will live-stream two live matches per match day in the group stage, four round of 16 matches and four quarterfinal matches. Some matches will be exclusive to Facebook and Fox Sports Go, while others will be simulcast on TV. Half of the matches will be presented in English, while the other half will be in Spanish.
“Facebook is a social-media powerhouse and a great partner to help us grow soccer in the United States,” said David Nathanson, Fox Sports’ head of business operations. “As people spend more and more time on mobile devices and social networks, offering matches on this platform is a natural extension.”
According to Fox Sports, during this year’s UEFA Champions League final 34 million people engaged in 98 million interactions on Facebook.
Dan Reed, Facebook’s head of global sports partnerships, said the partnership will give Fox Sports a national platform for matches that won’t be televised. “This collaboration unlocks new distribution for Fox,” he said.
Pictured above: Juventus’ Juan Cuadrado (left) and Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos in the 2017 UEFA Champions League final in Wales, Cardiff, Great Britain on June 3.