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Four TV companies to battle for Linfield vs Celtic first leg rights


By Steven Beacom

Linfield are confident that they can tie up a live television deal to screen their potential home Champions League game with Celtic, taking their potential revenue haul from a two-leg affair to over £1million.

It is understood that FOUR television companies are keen to show the first leg of a meeting between the Blues and Bhoys on July 14 if the Irish League side manage to overcome La Fiorita from San Marino in the first qualifying round.

BT Sports, Sky Sports, BBC Scotland and Premier Sports are all in the running and with Celtic announcing that they won't be taking up their allocation of tickets for a Windsor Park clash, the interest of TV bigwigs has increased with talks under way.

In 2013, when Celtic were last in Northern Ireland to play Cliftonville in the Champions League qualifying stages, the TV rights for the first leg at Solitude were bought by BBC Scotland.

It is thought that with competition fierce for a Linfield game with Celtic at Windsor, the Blues could make a minimum of £100,000 from television.

Throw in advertising, merchandising, gate receipts and UEFA prize money and the Blues may bring over £1m into the club with a match up against Brendan Rodgers' Invincibles. Linfield manager David Healy is refusing to get carried away by thoughts of playing the Hoops.

Northern Ireland's record goalscorer is intent on being professional and respectful to opening round opponents La Fiorita ahead of Wednesday's first leg at Windsor. But the prospects of the riches in store from progressing are a powerful incentive for the Blues.

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph