Facebook has agreed a £200million deal to exclusively broadcast Premier League matches in four Asian countries from next year.
It represents a major breakthrough for the social media behemoth after they saw off competition from television networks BeIn Sports and Fox Sports Asia in the auction for broadcast rights to Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.
The deal will commence at the beginning of the 2019-20 season and run until 2022 and means Facebook will live-stream all 380 Premier League matches in those countries.
Facebook is trying to enhance its sports portfolio and bid unsuccessfully against Star India for the rights to the Indian Premier League cricket competition last year.
It has also covered some Major League Baseball, college basketball and the occasional Champions League fixture in the United States through its partnership with Fox Sports.
The deal represents another slight shift away from the traditional television networks towards online streaming after Amazon gained the rights last month to show 20 live Premier League matches per season from 2019-20.
It is believed the Premier League has also held discussions with YouTube and Netflix over rights deals in other parts of the world as the financial clout of streaming services grows ever stronger.
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