Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
THE Premier Soccer League and South African broadcaster SuperSport’s five-year deal has come to an end and the PSL will soon be inviting tenders for its media rights amid growing indications that new entrant Kwese Sports will be coming on board.
In a communiqué last night, PSL chief executive officer Kennedy Ndebele said the five-year marriage with the South African broadcaster had helped market the Zimbabwean game and financially improve the clubs’ coffers.
He said through beaming of the game to millions of viewers across the continent, Zimbabwe’s game also improved in terms of entertainment.
“The five-year relationship has been mutually beneficial to the two organisations. Through its high quality broadcasting channels, SuperSport has not only enabled PSL to deliver highly entertaining football, but it has exposed the Premier Soccer League and its commercial partners to millions of viewers across the African continent. The partnership has positively transformed local football through financial injection that has helped develop the game of football and benefit local clubs to invest in talent and meet some of their day-to-day expenses,” said Ndebele in the statement.
He said the partnership has also provided a platform for local players to showcase their skills to wider audiences, resulting in a number of them moving to leagues across the region and beyond.
“Further, the relationship has capacitated football administrators and media personnel through training and exchange programmes to improve their skills.”
The SuperSport deal was, however, meshed in secrecy, with some critics arguing that it seemed to benefit a certain clique of individuals at the expense of clubs which was not the case in other other African countries.
SuperSport paid $2 million for the right to broadcast some live matches over the five years, although it never specified how many live matches it would beam in a season.
Compared to other African leagues where SuperSport also holds exclusive television rights, the Zimbabwean PSL deal was the lowest. Each club gets $11 700 in the first half of the season and another $11 700 in the second half.
SuperSport had, as of last year, a R2 billion (about $134 million) five-year deal with the Absa PSL in South Africa under which each of the 16 clubs got a share of just over $2 million per annum.
In Zambia, the deal was worth $5 million over a five-year period and clubs there each get about $30 000 per year while the Kenyan package was worth $10 million. Nigeria’s League Management Company (LMC) penned a massive $34 million deal and all these include weekly highlights of all matches played in the respective leagues. — @skhumoyo2000
Article Source: The Chronicle