Saturday 29 April 2017

Fans flock to Ryan's TV plan

SHAMROCK ROVERS: The Dublin club made €300,000 from the TV rights to last week's game against Italian giants Juventus
SHAMROCK ROVERS: The Dublin club made €300,000 from the TV rights to last week's game against Italian giants Juventus

Harry Leech

MORE than half of Irish business owners agree with Communications Minister Eamon Ryan that some sporting events -- such as Ireland's involvement in next year's Six Nations -- should be designated free-to-air, and not go up on the TV rights market.

While events like the GAA Football and Hurling Championships are already free-to-air only, rights for Ireland's Six Nations matches are purchased by RTE on the open market.

Designating Irish rugby matches as free-to-air would certainly reduce the State broadcaster's bill -- but the IRFU has argued that such a move would be "seriously misguided" and leave them unable to pay players and support clubs.

The IRFU currently receives €15m for the broadcast rights to international and provincial matches. The Department of Communications put out a tender in July, for a consultant to report on the matter to the Minister.

Sunday Independent

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