EU court slaps down FIFA, UEFA over World Cup, Euro TV

As a consequence, countries must give detailed reasons to the European Commission -- guardian of EU business competition interests -- "justifying why they consider that the final stage of the World Cup or the Euro constitutes, in its entirety, a single event of major importance for society in the states concerned."

updated: July 18, 2013 16:27 IST
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Luxembourg: The European Court of Justice on Thursday dismissed long-running appeals by FIFA and UEFA over countries' right to declare their World Cup and Euro football championships flagship events that must be aired on free-to-view TV.

The ruling upholds earlier judgements supporting decisions in Britain and Belgium to prevent pay-to-view broadcasters from grabbing exclusive rights to the final tournament phases of both competitions, alongside other so-called 'crown jewel events.'

The EU's highest court sympathised with the world and European football governing bodies insofar as it held that not all matches during the tournaments need necessarily be declared priority events of major national interest.

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