La Liga FanCam introduced for player celebrations

La Liga has launched a FanCam that allows for supporters to view the goal celebrations of their favourite players.

The innovative was introduced last weekend on Matchday 11 and gives players an opportunity to celebrate with their fans while supporters are unable to attend matches due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Signage has been placed on the FanCams so that players know where to direct their celebrations towards. Footage of the best goal celebrations will also be shared via La Liga’s social media channels.

The cameras are also set to be installed in all La Liga Smartbank (second division) stadiums in the coming weeks.

The director of La Liga’s audiovisual department, Melcior Soler said that the FanCam was another step towards the improvement of La Liga’s audiovisual product.

“With it we are going to give fans a much more personal and genuine view of the players, seeing up close how they celebrate their team’s goals,” he said.

“We trust in the players to realise the importance of celebrating their goals in front of the FanCam, because this puts them in direct contact with their fans.”

“That’s why we are so convinced that their use of FanCam will increase, to the point that it is used all the time.”

62% of goals were celebrated in front of the FanCam last weekend with La Liga expecting this to increase to 100% in the near future.

La Liga is also set to introduce its first ever subscription-based mobile platform, La Liga Xtra in the coming months.

Last week mobile technology company Mondia was signed as the technology and commercial partner in Europe, Middle East, Africa and Asia Pacific for the launch of La Liga Xtra.

The platform will provide exclusive content from videos, to infographics and articles – daily, weekly and monthly subscription packages will be available.

The initial roll out of the La Liga Xtra will take place in the Middle East and Africa. La Liga is set to make further announcements about the availability of the platform in other continents and countries.

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Daniel Foley is a sports junior journalist with Soccerscene. He reports widely on football policy and micro industry matters.

Sport and Recreation Events Funding Program a key investment in Western Australia

Western Australia events are receiving significant support through the Sport and Recreation Events Funding Program 2023-24.

The WA State Government has invested over $630,000 to a host of sporting bodies across a vast number of codes.

The objectives of the program are to:

  • build capacity and capability of the sport and recreation workforce and volunteers to plan, secure and/or deliver quality sport and active recreation events
  • provide opportunities for talented WA athletes, coaches and officials to participate at a national and/or international level in their home environment
  • provide opportunities for the public to participate in sport and/or active recreation events
  • provide opportunities for regional Western Australians to experience and conduct major sporting events and sport development initiatives in a regional location.

The program comprises three categories:

  • event projects (up to $15,000)
  • event hosting (up to $50,000)
  • the Country Sport Enrichment Scheme (up to $30,000).

In Round 1 of the Sport and Recreation Events Funding Program 2023-24, one of the successful applicants was Football West, who ran 2024 Goldfields Regional Festival of Football – a seven-day community engagement event that improved football capacity in the wider Goldfields area. After receiving $24,200, Football West’s main goal is to increase participation in the region.

There is still time to apply for the next round of funding, which closes 5:00pm on February 26, 2024.

For full information and eligibility to apply, you can find it here.

WSL eyeing enormous 150% increase to broadcast rights deal

In a historic first for football in the UK, every single Women’s Super League match is set to be broadcasted live from next season across multiple channels.

The WSL tender document issued to broadcasters this month features all 132 league games, with 56 to be sold exclusively and the remaining 76 available on a non-exclusive basis.

Under the terms of the existing deal that expires at the end of the current season, Sky broadcast 35 matches-a-season and the BBC 22, with the rest streamed for free on the FA’s website.

The tender document is asking for a huge £20 million ($38.48 million) a year TV deal and this 150% increase to the value of its broadcasting deal is far from surprising following the explosion of the women’s game. This figure is set to be confirmed as soon as they can find the right suitors.

In an attempt to gain an increase from the existing £7.75 million ($14.91 million) a year deal, the WSL have responded by making every match available for broadcast, which the league hoped would attract bids from beyond current rights holders Sky Sports and the BBC, It looks to be working.

Sky Sports and the BBC are set to bid again on the rights and extend the current partnership whilst it is said that this potential deal is also attracting networks like TNT Sports and DAZN.

The Premier League and EFL have stood firm on the UEFA blackout that suggests all 3pm Saturday matches are not shown on TV, to encourage locals to attend matches in person. This means the WSL will have to work around it and it is likely that Saturday lunchtime and Sunday afternoons remain as the most common kick-off times.

There is little the WSL are having to do to persuade broadcasters into putting their hands up for these rights, which is a testament to the sport’s current growth and upward trajectory it is trending towards.

FA Director of Women’s football, Kelly Simmons, explained how important it was to secure this monumental broadcast deal.

“While we’ve been developing this it’s been so hard to sit on it because it’s so exciting for the women’s game. It is transformational,” Simmons said in an interview with Guardian Sport.

“When I first came into this role, we said that we really thought women’s football could really break into the mainstream and this is mainstream, this is prime slots on television, big audiences, week in week out.”

This deal in particular launches women’s football into the mainstream and helps improve the quality of the product which goes a long way to opening the eyes of a huge audience to its impact as a sport and socially.

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