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Concacaf President Victor Montagliani

Montagliani on Mediapro vs CSB: ‘I Think They’ve Worked Out Their Own Issues’

By on February 8, 2024 0 2035 Views

The President of Concacaf has produced some very positive sounding comments regarding the Mediapro and Canadian Soccer Business dispute which imply that collaborative progress is being made behind the scenes following a strong legal salvo between the two parties.

Speaking on Footy Prime today, Victor Montagliani revealed that he believes Mediapro and CSB have buried the proverbial hatchet between them, which would suggest the OneSoccer cameras – and all the staff who work on the platform – could be back to business as usual, though perhaps under a new broadcast and distribution agreement.

“I think they’ve worked out their own issues,” Montagliani said on the podcast. “When they’re ready to announce it, they’ll announce it, I guess.”

Northern Tribune was not able to confirm anything had been finalized between the two, but has heard generally positive attitudes regarding the relationship between the two parties, which is a far cry from the hard legal front put on by both just weeks ago.

Concacaf Champions Cup Forge Chivas Borges
Photo Credit: Concacaf

OneSoccer had revved up its proverbial engines to cover the opening night of Concacaf Champions Cup action in Canada this week, with the Mediapro-owned company producing both the Forge and Whitecaps matches while also complimenting it with studio analysis and match commentary, too.

The continental club competition is not a Canadian Soccer Business property, and therefore was not one of the items the CSB had reclaimed rights to last month. The properties involved in the dispute are the Canadian Premier League, Canadian Championship, and home matches for the Canadian men’s and women’s senior national teams.

It’s not clear how different the terms of any potential new agreement between the two would be, though it seems obvious that keeping Onesoccer and its existing infrastructure involved would simplify plenty for both parties.

Canada Jordyn Huitema
Photo Credit: John Jacques

Just days after the dispute became public, Northern Tribune’s sources with knowledge of the situation said that the CSB was internally confident fans would be able to tune in to all of its properties for 2024 in an accessible manner.

That was just a few days after the legal action between the two became public knowledge, which itself was at least one month after Mediapro had delivered a termination letter to the CSB – though Canadian Soccer Business purports that the broadcaster had no entitlement terminate and resile the agreement between the two.

“Maybe some of the characters out there thought something was worth X and now it’s not worth X, and they’re going ‘whoa, hold on, how do we rejig this?'”, pondered Montagliani. “It’s happened all over the world. In some ways, to be honest with you – and maybe I’m a little different – when I saw that I thought ‘oh, we’ve arrived in Canada’ – we’re actually having a scrap between broadcasters and football – all right!”

Canada Soccer Business Medipro Dispute
Photo Credit: John Jacques

The Concacaf President says that the media industry is ‘really changing’ these days, with broadcasters taking more adversarial positions with their properties. Even when CSB and Mediapro weren’t feuding, OneSoccer and Rogers found themselves embroiled in a CRTC complaint, and even Christine Sinclair’s farewell matches didn’t procure much interest from traditional cable providers.

“I can tell you that it’s happened even at Concacaf,” Victor says on the aforementioned adversarial positions. “It [just] hasn’t ever gone public.”

While concrete information remains elusive for now, one sign of positivity is that OneSoccer has been producing video and written content again, with its online accounts back to publishing after having gone largely quiet since January 24.

The streaming service has not published content for any CSB-property related as of yet, which makes sense given we’ve heard Mediapro and CSB have yet to come to any formal agreements despite the positive sound bites from Montagliani.

“Whatever issues they had between themselves, I’m sure they’ll resolve it,” concluded the Concacaf President.

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