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euro boost Major coup for Virgin Media as they sign bumper new Champions League deal

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Influential: Brian Kerr (right) and Niall Quinn have been part of Virgin Media Sport's star line-up. Photo: Sportsfile

Influential: Brian Kerr (right) and Niall Quinn have been part of Virgin Media Sport's star line-up. Photo: Sportsfile

Influential: Brian Kerr (right) and Niall Quinn have been part of Virgin Media Sport's star line-up. Photo: Sportsfile

Irish soccer fans are set to get a familiar offering when the Champions League, Europa League and new UEFA Conference League get underway this season after it was confirmed Virgin Media has signed a new package to screen all three competitions.

The agreement sees Virgin Media acquiring Irish rights to the first pick UEFA Champions League fixture on the Wednesday of each match week, and the rights to show every game in the UEFA Europa League, as well as the UEFA Europa League final and the UEFA Super Cup.

Virgin Media will also be the exclusive Irish broadcaster for every match in the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League which will potentially feature several League of Ireland teams each season.

The sub-licensing agreement with Saran Media Group will also include archive content from the UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League as well as the UEFA Super Cup for the next three seasons.

It is a major boost to the cable network after they failed to agree a deal to screen UEFA competition matches for this season after a lengthy run broadcasting the competitions came to an end last May.

“This is fantastic news for Irish football fans as we continue to bring the best of European football to their screens including the UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League, UEFA Super Cup, UEFA Nations League and the new UEFA Europa Conference League which will potentially include League of Ireland clubs,“ said Paul Higgins, Vice President of Commercial at Virgin Media

“This confirms Virgin Media as the leading Irish sports hub including free to air viewing, the best home-produced commentary and analysis and exclusive customer content through Virgin Media Sport. We’re looking forward to bringing the biggest clubs, the best players and the most excitement to our viewers and customers in the new season ahead.

“Today’s development comes hot on the heels of the announcement of ongoing joint contract discussions between Six Nations, Virgin Media Television and RTÉ to ensure that all three Six Nations Championships (Men’s Guinness Six Nations, Women’s Six Nations and Men’s Under 20’s tournaments) remain available on Free-To-Air television with an unprecedented level of coverage.“

Virgin Media Sport's panel has included host Tommy Martin, who is a regular contributor to sundayworld.com, along with Niall Quinn and Brian Kerr.

We can now expect that panel to be reassembled as Virgin Media prepares to continue its coverage of the Champions League and the two additional UEFA competitions next month.

Meanwhile, RTE will still screen Tuesday night matches in the Champions League, ensuring a soccer fans will not be confused by different matches being screened on numerous networks on the same night.

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