Can Apple TV + buy the rights to LaLiga football?


Can you imagine being able to have series like Servant on Apple TV + at the same time that a section of live broadcasts is opened in which to watch Madrid-Barça or Sevilla-Betis? There is currently a public war over the broadcast rights for LaLiga men’s football in Spain, with Movistar+ and DAZN as the main players. The high amount of money it costs to acquire these rights distances many platforms and brings only the largest closer. By budget, Apple TV + is one of them. But, is it really possible to get to bid for it?

The precedent confirmed this week

A year ago it became known of Apple’s interest in acquiring MLS broadcast rights, a very popular sport in the United States and that would serve as a great boost to the Californians’ streaming platform. Finally, on Tuesday Apple itself confirmed that it acquired part of the rights and that US users will be able to follow a weekly game every Friday.

This is a very good way to boost Apple TV+, given its low impact compared to other major platforms such as Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video or Disney+. And it is that, despite having a very interesting catalog of series and at a low price, having such limited content and available on a few devices has been too big a burden for the platform.

However, this confirmation that they will broadcast the MLS means opening the doors of the platform to live content as Amazon already has in some countries. In fact, these stand out for having the rights of Ligue1 (first division of French football). Therefore, today it is no longer unreasonable to see platforms of this style bidding for live sports.

Unlikely and at least nothing until 2027

At the beginning of the year, the purchase of part of the rights of LaLiga by DAZN for 1,400 million euros. It will be Telefónica, or rather its platform Movistar+who shares the broadcasting rights with them until 2027 and without ruling out that some open matches will continue to be offered to other DTT channels such as Gol (although never from teams that play in Europe).

Therefore, already answering the question asked, it seems very unlikely that Apple TV + will be interested in the rights of LaLiga. And there are several factors that make us foresee it. On the one hand, the cost of rights, which is getting higher and higher and they are not guaranteed to get the expected performance from these giants. Competition is also a fact to be taken into account and, seeing Amazon’s bet, it would not be ruled out that it start bidding in the next round.

the league

Although if there is a factor that makes us lean towards discarding this idea, it is the cultural factor. Although Apple TV + is a global platform, it is still closely linked to the United States, a market that the company knows best and in which it makes its biggest bets. Spanish football, although in low hours now, is attractive, but it does not seem very foreseeable that the apple platform will be interested in it in the future.

Be that as it may, nothing can ever be ruled out. After all, times change and more and more companies are adapting to the new way of consuming television. Fortunately.