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Premier League set to strike record TV deal with China — report

Clive Rose/Getty Images

The Premier League is about to become even richer.

While the recent domestic TV deal struck with Sky and BT Sport accounts for most of the broadcast income for Premier League teams — £5.14 billion paid in total from 2016 to 2019, amounting to £1.713 billion per year — a good chunk of money is also made by overseas TV broadcast rights.  The rest of the world currently contributes about £1 billion per year, making the English league easily the richest league on the planet.

And that amount of money is only set to increase.  According to the BBC, streaming platform PPTV are about to strike a £560 million deal for three years of the Premier League's broadcasting rights in China. Starting with the next three-year cycle in 2019, the £186.7 million-per-year deal would surpass the current deal made by American TV network NBC, which pays £134.8 million per season.

Others reports suggest that the amount paid by PPTV will be £485 million, or £161.6 million per year. Even then, it would still surpass NBC's deal and would increase China's current TV deal almost tenfold.

PPTV are owned by Suning, one of China's largest independent conglomerates and owners of both Jiangsu Suning FC (where Ramires plays) and Inter Milan, where they purchased a controlling stake earlier this year. Their ambitions are just the latest in Chinese president Xi Jinping's grand plan to become "the world's biggest sports economy by 2025".

Meanwhile, the Premier League cash money continues to print money.  One day, the TV bubble will (possibly) burst.  Until then, let the champagne flow.

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