Apple has agreed to a landmark deal with MLS in which Apple will exclusively stream every MLS match for 10 years starting in 2023.
MLS commissioner Don Garber said that the league will receive a base fee and percentage of subscription sales. A source with knowledge of the deal confirmed to Front Office Sports that the deal is worth at least $2.5 billion ($250 million annually).
Apple will stream all MLS and League Cup games, select MLS Next Pro and MLS Next games, and a weekly live-match whip-around show. The league’s goal is to have pregame, in-game, and postgame shows for every match.
Fans won’t need Apple TV+ for access but will need the Apple TV app. The streaming service’s cost, other programming, and match windows will be unveiled in the coming months.
- Around two matches per week will stream for free on the Apple TV app, the source said.
- Certain games will only be free for Apple TV+ subscribers.
- MLS season ticket-holders will automatically have access to MLS’ streaming service on the Apple TV app.
MLS president Gary Stevenson said the league is having conversations with Apple about broadcasts outside the U.S. and Canada.
MLS continues to work on a linear TV rights deal and is in discussions with ESPN, Fox, and other outlets, according to the source. Around 2-3 games are expected to be broadcasted per week via linear channels as a simulcast of Apple’s coverage.