LA LIGA

LaLiga targeting global TV audience of three billion by 2018

The figure would represent more than double the number of fans who tuned in worldwide for matches in Spain's top league last season, said Vicente Casado, La Liga managing director of international development.

LaLiga targeting global TV audience of three billion by 2018
Rodolfo Molina DIARIO AS

La Liga is targeting a global television audience of three billion people by the end of next season, a senior league official told a football conference in Qatar on Wednesday.

That would represent more than double the number of fans who tuned in worldwide for matches in Spain's top league last season, said Vicente Casado, La Liga managing director of international development.

Changing kick-off times 

Casado explained that the desire to build up worldwide audiences was behind La Liga changing kick-off times for Real Madrid and Barcelona matches. "This is one of the big reasons," he said.

One of the big two Spanish sides plays every week at 4.15pm local time on a Saturday, which by traditional Spanish cultural standards is an unconventional time to stage a football match.

El Clasico kicked off at 4.15pm last Saturday in order to compete with Premier League games in Asia

Asian market

The move is designed to maximise Asian TV viewers and go head-to-head with the Premier League's traditional 3pm kick-offs. In the 2015/2016 season, 1.2 billion fans globally watched La Liga games on TV, said Casado.

The current season should see that figure jump to 2.1 billion, as La Liga competes with rivals such as the English Premier League (EPL) to try and secure the largest share of the global television audience.

The three billion figure would match the figure for the number of people tuning in globally for English games, according to the EPL website.

Casado added that more than 13,000 people turned out at one site in New Delhi, India, at the weekend to watch Barcelona play Real Madrid in La Liga's top clash, El Clasico.