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Bundesliga News

DFL opts to continue arrangement with Russian broadcaster under watchful eye

By Peter Vice

The DFL's response to censorship of two Bundesliga broadcasts over the weekend by a Russian media outlet is to maintain the arrangement in the hopes that more messaging inside Bundesliga stadiums will get through to the Russian domestic population. 

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Photo: Derbystar

Pressed for a response after Russian licensee "Match TV" cut the feed to two Bundesliga broadcasts over the weekend, the FA responsible for Germany's top two footballing divisions argued for maintaining the relationship with the broadcaster on the basis that some anti-war messages are still getting through.

Responding to an inquiry from German footballing magazine Kicker, the DFL argued that not all Bundesliga fixtures had been censored in the same way that Leipzig-Dortmund and Gladbach-Mainz were this past weekend.

"On recent matchdays, appeals for peace within the stadiums of the Bundesliga and 2. Bundesliga were available for the Russian population through live and time-delayed broadcasts," the statement reads, "Several matches were broadcast in full."

The DFL did note that it had taken last weekend's feed-cuts into account and spoken with the broadcast provider about the incidents.

"We have noted the interruption of broadcasts and have addressed this with 'Match TV' in all due clarity," the statement continues.

"It is common knowledge that the DFL does not directly benefit from the arrangement with 'Match TV' under the current circumstances," the statement emphasizes, "We shall continue to donate the revenue already acquired under this partnership to humanitarian causes."

The general argument made by the federation highlighted the continued possibility of some anti-war messaging getting through to Russian audiences, though the DFL left open the possibility of terminating the arrangement if further feeds were cut.

"The DFL continues to rely on the possibility of reaching some in Russia with messages of peace from inside the stadiums," the statement concludes, "At the same time, of course, we are continuing to monitor whether and to what extent this possibility continues to exist."

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