Giant sports media broadcaster, SuperSport has made a shocking announcement that with immediate effect, it would no longer be broadcasting any Confederation Of African Football content.
The announcement followed Caf terminating its $1-billion TV and marketing rights deal agreement with French broadcast company Lagardère Sports.
SuperSport had acquired broadcasting rights directly from the French agency hence their failure to beam matches across the continent.
Following the sad development for soccer starved South Africans, Bafana Bafana’s opening Afcon 2021 back to back qualifiers against Ghana and Sudan are highly likely not going to be broadcast on SuperSport.
The Under-23 African Cup of Nations currently taking place in Egypt starting this weekend that also serve as qualifiers for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics men’s football tournament have been also affected.
“Due to the termination by the Confederation of African Football (CAF) of its agency agreement with Lagardere, SuperSport will not be broadcasting CAF content, commencing with the Afcon under-23 championship, starting in Egypt this weekend, until further notice. This also extends to the Afcon qualifiers, which resume on Wednesday, 13 November”, commented Joe Heshu, MultiChoice Group Executive for Corporate Affairs.
“We are in a difficult position where we cannot broadcast the CAF games when we don’t have a firm contractual arrangement in place. SuperSport had previously acquired these broadcast rights from Lagardere,” further commented Heshu.
It also serves to mean that South African will not be able to watch Mamelodi Sundowns and Bidvest Wits participation in CAF Champions League and Confederations Cup group stage assignments that commence later this month.
It remains to be seen whether the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) will honour its own end of a bargaining agreement, they signed with the South African Football Association to televise Bafana Bafana matches.
The SABC will therefore be expected to broadcast Bafana’s second 2021 Afcon qualifier against Sudan on Sunday at Orlando Stadium.
By Gerald Dandah