Relief for Hong Kong football fans as TVB steps in to ensure FA Cup final will be broadcast live

LeSports, broadcasting arm of troubled firm LeEco, had abandoned scheduled screening

PUBLISHED : Friday, 26 May, 2017, 10:09am
UPDATED : Saturday, 27 May, 2017, 10:26am

Hong Kong football fans could breathe a sigh of relief after TVB stepped in to ensure this weekend’s FA Cup final would be broadcast in the city.

LeSports, part of troubled Chinese firm LeEco, stunned supporters of Chelsea and Arsenal when it announced that due to “programme adjustments” it would not be screening the showpiece game live as scheduled.

With LeEco facing a cash crunch and laying off hundreds of workers, that led to speculation that LeSports could not pay the satellite link-up fees.

The company refused to comment further than a statement released on Facebook that led to fury among customers.

It meant the only option for fans to see the game was through illegal internet streams, until TVB announced it had secured the rights and the game will be shown free-to-air live on Jade.'

UPDATE:

After the Post published this story, sports rights company MP & Silva sent this statement:

"Having endured challenging negotiations with LeSports that resulted in an impasse, after the the company was unable to fulfil its commercial obligations to MP & Silva, the FA Cup official rights distributor in Hong Kong, MP & Silva promptly worked towards finding a solution to ensure that the most important match of the FA Cup season is available to football fans in Hong Kong. 

We are pleased to have secured a last-minute deal with TVB to ensure that the FA Cup Final will be showcased this weekend."