NewsNews6 August 2019

The head of sports projects management of 1+1 media in response to Oleksandr Denisov's statement

Yes, we easily exchange t-shirts with them, but there is a key difference: Oleksandr refers to the fact that Football 1/2 channels won a tender for three seasons of the Ukrainian Premier League (UPL) and are official broadcasters, but our opinion, in fact the Premier League broke all its own promises by transferring the rights through a conditional "tender".

Today, the situation is as follows: what was promised by UPL President Thomas Grimm on the eve of his election and during the first steps in office, is completely different from what we observe today. The tender that was conducted and was mentioned by Oleksandr was absolutely unacceptable for us and other TV companies that might be interested in acquiring a similar rights plan. The fact that none of them, except for the Football 1/2 channels, showed any activity at all, only confirms the fact that the tender conditions were specific and did not reflect either the market situation or, even more so, the mood of the football community.

Oleksandr Denisov's recent statements are a necessary formality, but by no means reality. The reality is completely different: UPL is again trying to forcefully transfer all rights to one broadcaster. Many clubs do not agree with this decision, nor with the policy that the Premier League is currently pursuing. And the fact that today five clubs are already working with us confirms our opinion. In addition, now we simply do not mention those clubs that wanted to sign contracts with us, but due to the understanding that today they work with the Football 1/2 channels - they were refused by us. And so there could be more clubs.

Therefore, in response to Oleksandr Denisov's words, I can answer the following:

I repeat - we will gladly exchange T-shirts if there is an opportunity, but we will not exchange any fragments. We do not take allegations of wrongdoing seriously. Such statements sound simply ridiculous. After all, according to the established rules, decisions are made by 2/3 votes of the participants. That is, if there are less than eight participants, then in fact such decisions are illegitimate. Today, there are seven teams in the Football 1/2 channel pool, five in 1+1 media. Despite the procedural limitations and points related to how these decisions were made in the UPL, today, de facto, there is no 2/3 vote for a single pool, so the decision was clearly made in a non-transparent manner. And if we are talking about illegality, then we consider illegal the very attempt of the Premier League to transfer all the rights to the Championship into one hand without a tender and transparent conditions. Especially in view of the fact that a number of clubs, including FC "Karpaty", officially asked the UPL to transfer their rights to them for a year in order to solve this problem during this time by a civilized way of tendering, negotiations and compromise, and already next year to find the form that suits all participants in the process: all football clubs, and not just some part of them that considers itself better than others.

From our point of view, the concept should be changed and a consensus should be sought in the Championship. This is the only way to establish transparent and clear rules of the game, because conflicts do not benefit Ukrainian football, which is already in a state of crisis. What is happening now is a step back and certainly not in favor of Ukrainian football.

Today you need to work with fans, broadcasters and people who love football. Only in this way is it possible to change the realities of holding the Championship for the better, making it open and transparent, which will raise it to a higher level and reflect on the football culture in our country as a whole.

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