Apple TV set be exclusive home of new FIFA World Cup tournament

Apple reportedly bidding for rights to major new FIFA event

FIFA World Club Cup 2023 – Manchester City winners
(Image credit: Khalid Alhaj / MB Media / Getty Images)
Quick Summary

FIFA will host a new version of its Club World Cup tournament in the US next summer and Apple TV could be the exclusive broadcaster,

It has reportedly bid $1 billion for the 32 team event, to show all matches live on its streaming service.

Apple has reportedly bid for the exclusive broadcast rights to a new FIFA tournament coming next summer.

A reimagined FIFA Club World Cup featuring 32 teams from around the globe – including 12 from Europe – is to be held in the United States from 15 June to 13 July 2025 and will act as a precursor to the international World Cup that's also being staged in the US the following year.

It is claimed that Apple is in advanced talks to be the sole broadcaster for the tournament and will allegedly pay $1 billion to host it on its streaming service.

The New York Times even states that an agreement is "close" and the rights package will be applicable worldwide. That means you'll be able to watch all live matches, and likely on demand replays, through the Apple TV app on multiple devices.

However, it is currently unclear whether it will be included as part of an Apple TV+ subscription or if there will be a separate charge, as with the MLS Season Pass.

It is thought that FIFA may demand some, if not all, matches to be available to watch for free (much like it does for the full FIFA World Cup). According to the NYT, "senior executives at FIFA" have expressed concern about locking the coverage behind a paywall.

Also according to the news outlet, Apple might be getting something of a bargain if the billion dollar deal is confirmed. It is said that FIFA was originally looking for $4 billion for the global rights.

What is the FIFA Club World Cup?

The FIFA Club World Cup has traditionally featured the winners of the European Champions League, plus other club teams to have won their respective continental trophies in Asia, Africa, North and Central America, South America, and Oceania,

Manchester City are the current holders, having won the 2023 tournament in Saudi Arabia, with Liverpool and Chelsea also having won it in recent times.

In fact, you have to go as far back as 2012 to find the first winner outside of Europe – Corinthians of Brazil – but the new 32 team format has been designed to be a more significant competition.

Entrants will be assigned based on ranking points assigned during continental cup performances. In addition, the winners of the last four UEFA Champions League will automatically qualify. Therefore, Chelsea, Real Madrid and Manchester City are already guaranteed spots in the 2025 event. They will be joined by the winners of the 2024 Champions League.

Other European teams guaranteed spots in the tournament, based on their European rankings, are Bayern Munich, PSG, Inter Milan, Porto and Benfica. Another three European spots are yet to be assigned.

Rik Henderson
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