The FA took the first major financial hit in football from the coronavirus crisis after failing to pay tens of millions of pounds worth of broadcast fees for this season’s FA Cup.
Sportsmail may reveal that IMG, which negotiated the lion’s share of the FA Cup’s 820 million pound sterling contract with foreign broadcasters, withheld payment for the quarter-finals because none of the four links occurred as expected last month due to the closure.
Under the terms of the agreement, IMG is deemed to have guaranteed payment to the FA regardless of receipt of funds from the broadcasters, which raises the question of whether the governing body will take legal action for breach of contract.
The FA has not received tens of millions of broadcast fees for this season’s FA Cup
FA President Greg Clarke pictured during an FA Cup match at Stamford Bridge
Wembley is concerned that a long postponement or cancellation of the FA Cup may have seismic ramifications in terms of loss of broadcast revenues, as the finale in particular is a huge worldwide televised event.
The quarter-finals are particularly valuable as they usually feature the biggest clubs in the Premier League, with ties from this season, including Manchester City, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal.
The record six-year deal, which started in 2018, is worth £ 137 million a year to FA from foreign broadcasters and has been negotiated by two agencies.
Pitch International’s rights deal in Europe and the Middle East is worth £ 245 million and IMG has paid £ 575 million for the rest of the world, which they quickly concluded was overvalued.
Wembley concerned that FA Cup cancellation may result in further loss of revenue
The IMG broadcast deal alone is expected to be worth nearly £ 100 million a year for the FA
The IMG deal alone is worth nearly £ 100 million a year to the FA, so missing payments for the last three rounds of the competition would result in huge losses.
Pitch is deemed to have paid the FA the amount due for his rights.
On Friday, the FA issued a collective statement with the Premier League and EFL confirming that football will not resume until it is sure to do so, and it is admitted to Wembley that the completion of the league program will prevail over cup competitions despite the financial impact. .
The FA is said to be in talks with IMG to resolve the situation. An FA spokesperson said they never discuss trade arrangements.
IMG declined to comment on Friday evening.