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FIFA chief weighs in on Women's World Cup broadcasting dispute ahead of tournament

FIFA president Gianni Infantino has called for a “fair deal” for the Women’s World Cup after holding fresh talks with TV bosses.

‌European Broadcasting Union director general Noel Curran has met with Infantino as they look to thrash out a deal which starts on July 20 but so far no agreement has been reached.

‌The BBC and ITV are “very close” to striking a joint broadcast deal to show the Lionesses games but there is frustration at FIFA over the bidding process and why TV companies are not trying to do a contract which would also help the growth of the women’s game.

Italy, Germany, France and Japan have so far offered to pay a tiny fraction of the value of the men’s TV rights for the 2022 World Cup. Infantino said: “The European Broadcasting Union and their members have been long-term partners of FIFA and together they have helped bring our tournaments to a massive TV audience across many territories for many years.

“This is set to continue with the FIFA Women’s World Cup which kicks off in 50 days, and we continue to seek a fair deal for the remaining media rights for the tournament in line with the growth of the women’s game.

‌“We also appreciate that the EBU are looking at ways to promote the rapid development of women’s football on their various channels. It was good to understand the plans that the EBU have and how committed to developing football coverage across their network for the years to come.”

FIFA president Gianni Infantino (



Infantino's comments come after the sports ministers of the UK, Italy, Germany, France and Spain issued a joint statement calling for FIFA to "find a common path" with broadcasters over the rights. "Media exposure to women's sports has indeed a highly significant impact on the development of women's and young girls' sports practices," the statement read.

"Because of the high potential of the FIFA Women's World Cup and the sport and social issues at stake, we consider it our responsibility to fully mobilise all stakeholders, for them to quickly reach an agreement.

"These are decisions for FIFA and broadcasters to take independently, but we know that discussions are in progress and we are confident in FIFA and independent broadcasters' capability to find a common path toward fair development of the FIFA Women's World Cup."