The 2021 World Men’s Handball Championship match between Sweden vs Egypt will take place Monday in the 3rd round of Group G games of the 27th IHF Men’s Handball World Championship – Egypt 2021. And if you are wondering to watch the action live than you are in the right place.
The 2021 IHF World Men’s Handball Championship is the 27th event hosted by the International Handball Federation held in Egypt from 13 to 31 January 2021. This is the first Handball Championship with 32 teams instead of 24.
Stay tuned as match is due to start at 19:00 Cairo time (GMT+2)
* Egypt opened the 27th IHF Men’s Handball World Championship campaign by beating Chile 35-29 then they defeated North Macedonia 38-19 in the second round of Group G games.
* Sweden also started the tournament with beating North Macedonia 32-20, before smashing Chile 41-26 respectively.
Venue: Cairo Stadium Sports Hall
Broadcast rights to the 2021 IHF World Men’s Handball Championship, which begins today (Wednesday) in Egypt, have been distributed widely by the Sportfive agency in handball markets worldwide, with the exception of Poland where a deal could not be reached with public broadcaster TVP.
Sportfive holds the international distribution rights in an agreement running from 2019 to 2025 and has struck deals in major handball countries, plus strategic markets regarded as key by the International Handball Federation.
These include China, where streaming platform Huya is broadcasting matches, and the US, where ESPN+, the Disney-owned direct-to-consumer streaming platform, will continue to stream the matches despite the US team pulling out yesterday (to be replaced by Switzerland) because of a Covid-19 outbreak.
Poland are among the 32 teams to have qualified but the rights have not been sold in the Central European country, with TVP’s offer understood to have been a long way off Sportfive’s asking price.
While free-to-air commercial broadcasters are thought to have held informal talks over the rights, there remains government pressure in Poland for events of national importance to be shown on TVP. This is thought to have had the effect of diluting competition for the rights. Commercial broadcasters acquiring the rights could also have faced pressure to share the rights with TVP.
Along with the government influence, there is also legislative need for free-to-air coverage of the tournament in Poland. Listed events legislation in the country states that the semi-finals, final and matches of the Polish team must be aired on free-to-air television.
Pan-European sports broadcaster Eurosport held the rights in Poland to the 2019 World Men’s Handball Championship, although the national team did not quality for that tournament.
SportBusiness understands that Sportfive targeted a fee along the lines of that paid by TVP for the 2017 tournament, for which Poland qualified and whose matches attracted strong audiences on the public broadcaster’s TVP and TVP Sport channels. That deal, which included the 2015 and 2017 editions of the men’s and women’s tournaments, was brokered by the Pitch International agency on behalf of beIN Media Group, the international rights-holder at the time.
While it is understood that no last-minute deal is likely in Poland, there will not be a broadcast blackout for fans as they will be able to watch the live streaming coverage on the IHF’s YouTube channel. Poland begin their campaign on Friday against Tunisia before fixtures against Spain on Sunday and Brazil on January 19.
Commenting on the issue, TVP Sport director Marek Szkolnikowski said on Twitter: “When we win important tenders in a very competitive market, the ‘experts’ say that with such a budget everyone would win. However, when it turns out that we care about public money and do not overpay for the rights, there is outrage.”
Given the sizeable difference between the TVP offer and the Sportfive asking price, it is likely that the agency has decided to defend the valuation of the rights, particularly with the 2023 event to be co-hosted by Poland (and Sweden).
Sportfive has agreed broadcast deals with broadcasters covering 30 of the other 31 participating nations.
In Europe, these include deals in: Austria (ORF), Belarus (Belarus 5), Croatia (RTL), Denmark (DR, TV2), France (beIN Sports, TF1), Germany (ARD, ZDF, Sportdeutschland.TV, Eurosport), Hungary (MTVA), Iceland (RUV), North Macedonia (Arena Sport), Norway (TV3, Viasat), Portugal (RTP, MBO), Russia (Match TV), Slovenia (RTV), Spain (RTVE), Sweden (TV3, Viasat) and Switzerland (TV24).
Elsewhere, rights have been sold in the participating countries of: Angola (TPA), Algeria (ON Time Sports), Argentina (DirecTV), Bahrain (ON Time Sports), Brazil (Enjoy TV), Cape Verde Islands (RTC), Chile (DirecTV), DR Congo (Canal Plus for news and highlights), Egypt (ON Time Sports, Telecom Egypt), Korea (Eurosport Asia), Morocco (ON Time Sports), Qatar and Tunisia (both ON Time Sports), plus Uruguay (DirecTV).
A deal has not yet been announced in Japan, who begin their campaign on Friday.
A radio rights deal is also in place with the European Broadcasting Union consortium. The YouTube live streaming is available in all markets where a broadcast deal is not in place.
Sportfive acquired the international rights from 2019 to 2025 in a deal completed in September 2018.
This came after the IHF ended its proposed €150m ($182.4m) agreement with the MP & Silva agency and entered into negotiations with Sportfive. The agency also held the IHF rights between 2002 and 2009, before being usurped by the UFA Sports agency.
During the original bid process for the 2019-25 contract, Sportfive (then Lagardère Sports) lodged alternative bids of CHF73.1m (€67.7m/$82.4m) and CHF110m for the 2019-21 and 2019-23 cycles, respectively. The figures excluded the necessary spend on broadcast production.
The 2021 tournament gets underway tonight as hosts Egypt face Chile.