Vincent Labrune's new dumpling

Vincent Labrune’s new dumpling

LFP president Vincent Labrune once again provoked the anger of Canal+ and Maxime Saada, while a slight rapprochement was underway in the Ligue 1 TV rights issue.

There almost was improvement in relations between Canal+ and the LFP.
As revealed in an article from L’Equipe
, Maxime Saada, the boss of the encrypted channel, had agreed to have lunch with Vincent Labrune, the president of the League, to discuss the thorny issue of TV rights. We know that the two men are on bad terms, but the rapprochement would have been facilitated by CVC.

The American investment fund bought 13% of the LFP commercial company, and must therefore count on the League’s income, but these must still be substantial. Finally, the Saada-Labrune lunch was canceled at the last minute by the first named. The reason ? An interview with Labrune published by Le Monde, with a statement that caused the channel to jump: “Canal+ did not wish to align with Amazon’s proposal at this amount. The clubs were in a very difficult financial situation at that time, they were really close to 70 million euros”.

The 2021 call for tenders, the divide

Labrune refers to the call for tenders organized in 2021. At the time, Amazon had won the piece for 250 million euros per season, for the only lot put into play, the one abandoned by Mediapro (8 matches out of 10 per day). But on the Canal+ side, we didn’t know that Amazon was also on the scene. And so the channel did not think that the League was waiting for it to increase its offer. Canal+ already paid 332 million euros per year for the other two matches each day, an exorbitant rate, dating from the Mediapro fiasco. The channel estimated that 512 million euros was enough for Ligue 1.

It is this call for tenders which widened the gap between Canal+ and the LFP. The channel felt wronged by paying more than Amazon for content that was less good, qualitatively (the best matches were on Prime Video) and quantitatively. Seeing Saada accept this lunch with Labrune is a sign that Canal+ has perhaps not given up on Ligue 1, obviously. Vincent Bolloré’s group could be one of the broadcasters of the 100% Ligue 1 channel that the LFP plans to create.

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