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Mediapro’s Roures claims 600k subs for Téléfoot as talks with league restart

Mediapro chief Jaume Roures has claimed that troubled French premium football service Téléfoot has about 600,000 subscribers, excluding possible additions coming from its deals with French ISPs.

The Spanish producer and broadcaster has been engaged in a stand-off with the French Professional Football League over its failure to pay a second tranche of money owned under its four-year rights deal. Mediapro has been calling for a renegotiation in the face of difficulties arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The company was due to make a payment of €172 million on October 5, but failed to do so, sparking a crisis that led the LFP to threaten abandoning the deal.

At a press conference, Roures said that Mediapro had never claimed it would reach its ultimate goal of three million subscribers during the first season of the deal. However, he denied reports that the service had only around 200,000 subscribers and said that the actual figure was “around 600,000”.

Roures also denied reports that Mediapro’s deal with RMC Sport, which gives it access to Champions League football for the coming season, cost €175 million.

Roures told journalists that Mediapro was engaged in confidential discussions to resolve its dispute with the LFP.

He said that Mediapro wanted to modify the contract to take account of the impact of the crisis, and was only seeking to amend the terms for the current season.

The LFP has earlier warned Mediapro that it could look to rival broadcasters in the face of the Spanish company’s failure to pay up. A generally assembly of the league this week authorised it to seek an urgent loan of €112 million in the absence of the rights deal payment.