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Electronic Arts (EA) Sports has signed a new partnership with Sky Sports, which will see the gaming firm sponsor the UK pay-TV network’s Premier League coverage, both parties have confirmed.
The deal, which kicks in from the 2022/23 season, will see EA Sports branded content used across Sky’s Premier League coverage until the end of the 2024/25 campaign, using a blend of gameplay video from the FIFA gaming series with real-life action. The tie-up also includes campaigns across Sky Sports’ digital channels.
“The timing is perfect as we evolve as a brand and we’re excited to start this multiyear partnership, providing a unique opportunity to connect with Premier League fans through broadcast, social and interactive experiences,”  James Salmon, EA Sports’ marketing director, told Adweek.
Brett Aumuller, managing director at Sky Media, added: “We’re absolutely thrilled to announce EA Sports joining our stellar line-up of sponsors for the Premier League. EA becomes the first official Premier League partner to sponsor our Sky Sports coverage, as well as first to include social media rights.
“This innovative partnership will come to life across multiple platforms and capture the excitement and scale only the Premier League can deliver.”
With the video games producer set to end its 29-year flagship soccer simulation series partnership with the game’s global governing body, Fifa, the deal with Sky will be leveraged to promote the rebranded EA Sports FC title from 2023. The deal with Sky comes after EA Sports recently signed a €30 million a year naming rights partnership with Spanish soccer’s LaLiga that runs until 2028.
In other Premier League news, new research led by has revealed that more than 1.2 million UK-based fans admitted to streaming at least one English top-flight soccer match illegally last season. More broadly, the study found that more than two million of the UK consumers surveyed said they had watched some sports coverage illegally over the last 12 months.
On the legal side of the media business, the Premier League has signed a free-to-air (FTA) rights deal with South African public broadcaster SABC, as well as extending its agreement with Sport 24, IMG’s channel for airlines and cruise lines, until 2025.