Apple reshapes MLS football schedule to suit its needs

Apple TV+ will kick off the 2023 season of MLS, the American Soccer League, on February 1 as scheduled. Hardcore fans must pay $14.99 per month (or $79 for the entire season) in order to enjoy all games. The prizes in euros have still not been announced, which should not take too long since the competition will be visible in a hundred countries (with comments in French for the Canadian teams involved).

Apple released a preview of the season’s schedule tonight and there’s plenty to do, from regular season games to events like Rivalry Week (four days of competition between big teams from each conference), the All – Star Game, Decision Day before the playoffs… Remember that some matches will be free for everyone, others will be offered only to Apple TV+ subscribers.

Apple has spent lavishly to afford the MLS broadcasting rights for ten years ($ 2.5 billion), which allows it to change the schedule to its liking. Thus, the majority of matches will take place on Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. local time (some Wednesdays as well). It would be a question of not competing with Friday night baseball, also broadcast on Apple TV+. MLS is a little league and Apple wants to do everything to give it luster and attract subscribers.

MLS football and MLB baseball aren’t the only sports Apple is interested in. The manufacturer also has US NFL football in its sights, at least that was the case this summer with a $2.5 billion offer for Sunday Ticket matches. But the negotiations will eventually fall apart.

Apple ” wouldn’t see the logic of a deal at this price, according to the site Puck News. At issue: the restrictions imposed by the NFL. The “package” under negotiation does not include international rights, it does not lift bans on broadcasting in certain regional markets (the famous “black-outs”), and the NFL imposes a minimum price for the subscription so as not to cannibalize the formulas established on the American television networks. Not so interesting after all in the eyes of Apple…


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