Skip to main content

Real Madrid, Barcelona fined $10M over TV rights deal

December 2, 2013 -- Updated 2218 GMT (0618 HKT)
Real Madrid have usurped Manchester United as the world's most valuable soccer club according to Forbes. The Spanish giants, whose star player is Cristiano Ronaldo, increased their value by 76% over the past year to $3.3 billion.
Real Madrid have usurped Manchester United as the world's most valuable soccer club according to Forbes. The Spanish giants, whose star player is Cristiano Ronaldo, increased their value by 76% over the past year to $3.3 billion.
HIDE CAPTION
Real Madrid - the world's most valuable club
2. Manchester United
3. Barcelona
4. Arsenal
5. Bayern Munich
6. AC Milan
7. Chelsea
8. Juventus
9. Manchester City
10. Liverpool
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Four Spanish clubs fined over four-year TV rights deal with Mediapro
  • Country's anti-competition law says such contracts can only be for three years
  • La Liga champion Barcelona and rival Real fined $10 million between them
  • Sevilla and Santander also fined, while Mediapro must pay almost $9 million

(CNN) -- Barcelona and Real Madrid have been fined for breaking Spain's anti-competition laws when agreeing a television deal for their domestic league and cup soccer matches.

The two clubs, along with Sevilla and Racing Santander, must pay almost €8.5 million ($11.5 million) between them, while TV production company Mediapro has been fined €6.5 million ($8.8 million).

They were found guilty by Spain's National Markets and Competition Commission (CNMC) of agreeing a TV rights deal of longer than the stipulated three years.

In 2010, the clubs agreed four-year contracts with Mediapro.

Real was fined €3.9 million ($5.28 million), Sevilla €900,000 ($1.21 million) and Santander €30,000 ($40,624) -- all in line with the values of their respective contracts.

La Liga champion Barca said Monday it intends to appeal its €3.6 million ($4.87 million) fine within the allowed two-month window, but would pay despite it having "an economic impact" on this season's operations "subject to a favorable ruling on future courts involving the refund of payment made."

"FC Barcelona's appeal is based on the consideration that the signing of the contract was consistent with the provisions of the General Law on Audiovisual Communication, and also that the contract of assignment of rights mentioned has not affected in practice the audiovisual market," its website reported.

"The contract was signed by the previous Board, dated June 9, 2010, four days before the presidential elections. That decision was challenged by some candidates."

Sandro Rosell, Barca's current club president, took over from Joan Laporta -- whose reign lasted from 2003-10.

Spanish clubs, unlike those in other top European leagues, do not have collective television agreements.

Real and Barca hold 50% of the top division's TV income, with the other half shared among the other 18 clubs.

It has helped the leading duo not only dominate the domestic competition, but also become two of the world's most wealthy clubs -- allowing Real to splash out $132 million on Gareth Bale in August while also tying star player Cristiano Ronaldo to a lucrative new long-term contract worth a reported $206 million.

Barca's financial resources are not quite so deep, though have improved since accepting shirt sponsorship for the first time in 2010 with the Qatar Foundation -- a five-year deal reportedly worth up to $225 million. The club signed Brazil star Neymar for $75 million in May.

The CNMC said in a statement explaining the ruling that the four clubs and Mediapro had committed "a very serious offense" by breaking its April 14, 2010 ruling on the acquisition of broadcasting rights for football competitions.

Read: Bale fires first hat-trick for Real

Read: Barca stumbles to first league defeat

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1348 GMT (2148 HKT)
A man as a Roman centurion and who earn his living by posing with tourists gestures in front of the Colosseum during a protest where some of his colleagues climbed on the monument on April 12, 2012 in Rome. The costumed centurions are asking for the right to work there after they were banned following a decision by local authorities.
From the ancient ruins of Rome, a new empire rises. But the eyes of the city's newest gladiator light up at thoughts of the Colosseum.
October 21, 2014 -- Updated 1622 GMT (0022 HKT)
Once part of Germany's largest Jewish sports club, now he's the first ISIS suspect to stand trial in a country left shocked by his alleged radicalization.
October 17, 2014 -- Updated 1411 GMT (2211 HKT)
One goal in eight matches for new club Liverpool, and dumped by the Italian national team -- Mario Balotelli has yet to shine on his English return.
October 18, 2014 -- Updated 1819 GMT (0219 HKT)
Ched Evans smiles during the Wales training session ahead of their UEFA EURO 2012 qualifier against England on March 25, 2011 in Cardiff, Wales.
Should a convicted rapist, who has served their time in prison, be allowed to resume their old job? What if that job was as a high-profile football player?
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 1247 GMT (2047 HKT)
After 10 years of golden glory, it's easy to see how Lionel Messi has taken his place among the football gods.
October 16, 2014 -- Updated 1034 GMT (1834 HKT)
A football fan wipes a tear after Inter Milan's Argentinian defender Javier Zanetti has greeted fans following the announcement of his retirement before the start of the Italian seria A football match Inter Milan vs Lazio, on May 10, 2014, in San Siro Stadium In Milan
When will the tears stop? A leading Italian football club is pursuing a new direction -- under the guidance of its new Indonesian owner.
October 13, 2014 -- Updated 2241 GMT (0641 HKT)
Norwegian 15-year-old Martin Odegaard is the youngest player ever to feature in a European Championships qualifying match.
October 10, 2014 -- Updated 1310 GMT (2110 HKT)
After revolutionizing cricket with its glitzy Twenty20 league, India has now thrown large sums of money at a new football venture.
October 2, 2014 -- Updated 1453 GMT (2253 HKT)
Get ruthless. That is Rio Ferdinand's message to soccer's authorities in the fight to tackle the scourge of racism.
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1328 GMT (2128 HKT)
A picture taken on May 16, 2014 shows 15-year-old Norwegian footballer Martin Oedegaard of club Stroemsgodset IF cheering during a match in Drammen, Norway. Oedegaard is set to become Norways youngest player ever in the national football team.
He's just 15 and the world is seemingly already at his feet. Norway's Martin Odegaard is being sought by Europe's top clubs.
ADVERTISEMENT