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How DAZN acquiring Eleven Sports affects soccer fans in USA

In the United States, DAZN’s acquisition of Eleven Sports may be viewed as a minor deal. However, it is a big deal in the rest of the world. Still, it should have positive ramifications for US soccer fans.

DAZN has become synonymous with boxing events in the US, but as close as our northerly neighbor Canada, DAZN is a major player in the world of soccer rights.

DAZN acquires Eleven Sports

In Canada, they have exclusive rights to UEFA’s club competitions – Champions League, Europa League and Conference League. DAZN was also the home of the English Premier League in Canada for three full seasons until fuboTV outbid them at the beginning of the current season.

Meanwhile in Europe over the last few years, DAZN has acquired domestic rights to Serie A in Italy, Friday and Sunday Bundesliga matches in Germany as well as being the home of MLS for viewers in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Japan and Brazil.

In the US, DAZN is not without some soccer coverage. DAZN is the exclusive rights’ holder for UEFA’s Women’s Champions League (made available for free thanks to their broadcasting deal with YouTube), as well as Liga F, Spain’s premier women’s soccer league.

With DAZN’s acquisition of Eleven Sports, DAZN will also become the home for several European leagues. Those include the Swiss Super League, Danish Superliga, Polish Ekstraklasa, Norwegian Eliteserien, Icelandic Top Football, Professional Football League of Kazakhstan, Latvian Optibet Virsliga, Northern Ireland Premiership, Slovak Fortuna Liga and Italian Serie C. When you add the minor leagues covered by Eleven Sports that they acquired with their purchase of MyCujoo back in 2020, the amount of niche soccer coverage by DAZN becomes quite impressive.

How DAZN acquiring Eleven Sports affects soccer fans in USA

How does it affect US soccer fans? Yes, the coverage was already available via Eleven Sports and their partner OneFootball, but DAZN brings a level of professional streaming that, frankly, cannot be matched by the likes of Eleven Sports in the US. Evidenced by their UEFA Women’s Champions League coverage with YouTube, DAZN also brings world class production.

While a major player in Europe, Eleven Sports’ penetration into the US market has been less than spectacular. While I don’t foresee DAZN penetrating the US market as it did in Japan, Europe and even Canada, it’s good to see this world-class company taking over the distribution of so many soccer leagues in the US. No, it’s not the Premier League, La Liga, Serie A, etc. But US soccer fans deserve a quality streaming service, and DAZN is exactly that.

Photo credit: IMAGO / Beautiful Sports

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  1. Bram Weiser

    September 30, 2022 at 1:18 pm

    One thing I didn’t see in this article is that Eleven Sports tried, some years ago, to create a(nother) national sports channel on (digital?) cable, an effort that they seem to have largely given up on as that channel is now called “Next Level Sports”.

    Next Level DOES air some soccer, though, including (I believe) the Austrian Bundesliga and some others. (Verizon FiOS airs the channel, though only in HD.)

    While some might joke(?) that this channel is, in effect, a lesser form of BeINSports (notable given the challenges they’ve faced here, including a loss of La Liga rights to ESPN in recent years, though they still air Ligue 1, which includes the PSG side that they own, and the Turkish League), I’d love to see some insights, please, into how this Next Level resource might yet be utilized by DAZN/Eleven after such a purchase closes.

    Thanks again,
    Bram Weiser

  2. jason

    September 30, 2022 at 12:58 pm

    Yeah I hope this does not change anything. I enjoy getting myself some Switzerland, Norway, and Denmark action. Most of it commentary free too.

  3. JP

    September 30, 2022 at 10:44 am

    Also wonder what this means for Belgium rights here going forward. Since Eleven has the domestic rights (as seen on the production provided to ESPN+), and DAZN now owns Eleven, could see DAZN wanting to keep the rights in the US too. Same dynamic for Serie A if DAZN retains the rights again in Italy after the current contract ends 2024.

  4. JP

    September 30, 2022 at 10:37 am

    So will the free Eleven app cease to exist and all the properties moved to DAZN in the future (for a subscription?), or Eleven remain as a subsidiary of sorts for DAZN?

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