Sky Sports secures new five-year NFL rights deal from 2015

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Sky Sports has won the rights to broadcast NFL’s Monday Night Football as part of a new five-year deal to continue screening live American football coverage until the end of the decade.

From 2015 onwards, Sky Sports subscribers will be able to enjoy over 80 live fixtures a season, including up to five games each week of the regular season, featuring Monday night games, as well as the playoffs and Super Bowl.

Sky Sports’ new deal also includes all matches from the NFL’s International Series as teams travel to the UK for regular season match ups, including sell-out games at Wembley.

Monday Night Football games, which are broadcast by ESPN in the United States, currently air on British Eurosport in the UK, with the pan-European channel having secured a two-year deal on the eve of the 2013 regular season.

Live rights to these games will now pass over to Sky Sports from the 2015 season, who will continue to screen the lions share of live NFL matches to UK audiences until at least 2019.

A seperate deal with a terrestrial broadcaster is also expected to be confirmed for live Sunday Night Football games and the Super Bowl in due course, with Channel 4 currently holding these rights until the end of the this season.

Commenting on securing the new NFL for Sky Sports, managing director Barney Francis said: “We’re delighted to be awarded the rights to Monday Night Football as part of this fantastic new deal for even more live American Football.

“The agreement means Sky Sports viewers can enjoy all the drama, excitement and unpredictability from the NFL until at least 2019.

“Our partnership with the NFL spans two decades and we look forward to helping the sport continue its huge growth in popularity in the UK and Ireland for years to come.”

The new NFL deal is the 22nd live rights agreement to be announced by Sky Sports in 2014 across a wide ranges of sports, a year in which the broadcaster is marking 20 years of continuous NFL coverage.

Gridiron fans will be able to watch more regular season matches than before including Thursday and Saturday nights, Sunday double-headers and, new for 2015, Monday Night Football, which is currently shown on British Eurosport.

There is live coverage of every International Series match as American football continues to bring regular season games overseas including match ups at Wembley, while every play-off fixture will also be shown live as the season reaches the dramatic knockout stages, including the hugely anticipated Super Bowl and Pro Bowl.

Viewers can also enjoy all the drama and scores from around the NFL each Sunday of the regular season from RedZone, available via the red button, plus a variety of NFL support programming throughout the season, including NFL Total Access, keeping fans informed as the stories develop in between the live games.

Managing Director of NFL UK Alistair Kirkwood said: “Sky Sports has been a fantastic partner for 20 years and we are delighted to have agreed a deal that will extend that partnership to a quarter of a century.

“Sky’s coverage of the NFL and their support for the sport in this country has been an important element of our growth and we look forward to seeing their coverage expand and develop over the next five years.

“It is fantastic for our fans to have long-term certainty about where they can watch so many NFL games and I am sure they will welcome this exciting news.”

Sky Sports’ live NFL coverage is presented by Kevin Cadle, where he is joined in the studio by regular expert Neil Reynolds as well as other special guests throughout the season.

This season will see triple header days with three live games shown on October 26 to coincide with the second Wembley match, plus Thanksgiving in November.

Sky Sports News HQ will also provide up to date NFL news, views and previews from its brand new studio, while skysports.com/nfl has the big news, Fantasy Football advice, previews and big game reports, along with six episodes a week of NFL Total Access available to watch online.

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