Vodafone, 3 secure soccer content rights in U.K.

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LONDON-Vodafone U.K. said it and rival operator 3 have jointly secured the FA Premier League mobile rights in a three-season deal. The rights begin with the 2004/2005 season and run through the 2006/2007 season and give customers access to all 380 league matches each season on their mobile phones.

The revised rights package enables Vodafone U.K. and 3 to offer U.K. customers a number of services, including exclusive video match highlights, previews, archive footage and roundups, as well as audio bulletins, pictures messages and match scores.

Both operators have previous content deals surrounding the highly popular U.K. sport of soccer. Last month, Vodafone Group plc acquired the wireless rights for Europe’s UEFA Champions League soccer through the 2005 to 2006 season in 12 countries.

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