FA agree historic broadcasting deal with BBC to show Women’s Super League on terrestrial TV for first time
- BBC committed to showing Women’s Super League games on main channels
- Terrestrial broadcaster will share coverage with Sky Sports next season
- Potential of women’s game was shown with huge viewing figures for World Cup
The FA have agreed a groundbreaking new broadcasting deal for the Women’s Super League that will see matches screened on terrestrial television for the first time next season.
The historic agreement also marks the first time the WSL has attracted a rights fee — Sky Sports will share live coverage of the competition with the BBC, who have committed to showing games on their main network channels.
Sky Sports are understood to have secured first pick of the weekly games. They replace BT Sport as the WSL’s primary broadcaster, but the BBC have ensured they remain the secondary rights partner.
The WSL will be broadcast on the BBC and Sky Sports from next season after a historic deal
In a major boost for the profile of the women’s game, some matches will be on BBC1 and BBC2 — live coverage is currently restricted to the red button.
In addition to a multi-million-pound rights fee, though largely funded by Sky, the BBC are confident of delivering large audiences to their Women’s Football Show, which averages over 500,000 viewers per week, despite being condemned to a graveyard slot on Sunday nights.
Its potential was demonstrated during the 2019 World Cup, when 11.7m watched England’s semi-final defeat by the USA on BBC1, leading executives to conclude the time to invest in club football had arrived.
The exposure for the women’s game will be brilliant and is a huge opportunity for growth