No La Liga on TV this season
Reigning European champions Barcelona open the defence of their La Liga title with revenge very much on their minds when they visit Athletic Bilbao.
The match, which will kick off Sunday morning (Singapore time), will be an opportunity for Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Co. to put an ever improving Bilbao side in their place, after Ernesto Valverde’s men posted an emphatic 5-1 aggregate victory over Luis Enrique’s aristocrats in the Spanish Super Cup.
It is a potentially explosive encounter, but fans in Singapore will not have a chance to watch the match “live”.
Fox Sports Asia, which has had the channel rights to the Spanish top flight since 2012, were not successful in securing a deal this time around.
The channel, which airs on both StarHub TV and Singtel TV, will not screen any La Liga matches “live” this season.
The New Paper understands that the Asian rights to the league was secured by beIN Sports, which does not have a channel in Singapore.
Owned by Qatari Sports Investments, beIN is a global network of sports channels founded in 2012.
When contacted, a spokesman for Fox Sports said: “Fox Sports have been officially informed by (Spanish communications group) Mediapro that they have not been successful in renewing their broadcast rights to the Liga BBVA in Singapore.
“However, they (La Liga) remain open to discussions with the new broadcast rights holders.”
No updates from telcos
Singapore telcos StarHub and Singtel are both screening the English Premier League this season.
The situation has not been helped by a confusing tangle over the broadcast rights for La Liga in Spain, with Telefonica and Mediapro both owning parts of it.
The first of the always highly anticipated “El Clasico” between Barcelona and Real Madrid is scheduled on Nov 8 at the Santiago Bernabéu, and as it stands, Singapore fans will miss out on the individual head-to-head between Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.