February 22 – Video gaming took a step into the broadcast mainstream in the UK at the weekend with the first broadcast by Britain’s public broadcaster, BBC, of the FIFA 21 Global Series European Regional Qualifiers.
The esports matches were aired on the BBC iPlayer, as well as across BBC Sport’s website and app. The non-exclusive broadcast deal also saw the competition available on EA Sports and FIFA’s Twitch and YouTube channels.
The BBC has taken steps into the world of broadcast esports over the past year but this is the first time it has aired a game based on the physical version of the sport.
Brent Koning, EA SPORTS FIFA Competitive Gaming Commissioner said: “We see FIFA competitive gaming as an extension of football fandom, and BBC is the ideal partner as it will allow millions of UK fans the opportunity to watch one the most popular games played at the highest level.”
BBC iPlayer broadcasts up to eight hours of FIFA esports content per day of competition with those matches remaining available on its iPlayer for 30 days. The deal covers European Regional Qualifiers and is expected to be extended to cover the European play-offs.
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