L’Équipe report this afternoon that BeIN Sports have been successful in their court case against Canal+ over their commitments regarding the broadcasting of two Ligue 1 games a week. The Nanterre tribunal of commerce has ruled that the latter, to whom BeIN had subcontracted the €332m/year package, are to respect their contractual commitments.
Canal+ had initially announced their withdrawal from the package in light of Amazon being awarded the main broadcasting package for just €250m. Although the rights were awarded in 2019, the majority of the games – 8 a week – were back on sale earlier this year, after last season’s fiasco which saw Mediapro cease payments and a new call for offers.
The French football authorities had teamed up with BeIN in its litigation against Canal+, after the former were placed under protection last week by an arbitration ruling by which they were not obligated to pay the initial €53m instalment for the time being.
Despite Canal+’s refusal to broadcast the package it had been assigned, the channel now sees itself forced to show the Ligue 1 games it holds the rights to – notably Paris Saint-Germain’s trip to Troyes for the opening day on Saturday. RMC Sport add that the channel will appeal the decision, but this appeal would be non-suspensive, meaning it would still have to respect its contract as it awaits a decision.
Nevertheless, the LFP – the governing body of France’s professional leagues – has also seen BeIN take the matter to the European Commission, accusing it of “abusing a dominant position”.