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FRANKFURT (Reuters) - German soccer fans will have to pay to view broadcasts of any UEFA Champions League games from next year's season after Sky Plc unit Sky Deutschland secured a sub-license deal with digital sports content and media provider Perform Group.
The pay-TV operator said in a statement on Tuesday that it will broadcast the games via its satellite, cable, IPTV, web and mobile platforms from 2018/19 through 2020/21.
Perform Group will broadcast the games via its Internet platform called DAZN. It will be the first time the tournament will not be available on public broadcaster ZDF.
"We went as far as our pain threshold, but it was not enough," ZDF sport director Thomas Furmann was quoted as saying by German newspaper Bild on Tuesday, referring to the bidding process for the rights.
Sky Deutschland and The Perform Group did not make financial details public.
The German Bundesliga soccer league is one of the richest in the world after television rights for four years were sold for an average of around 900 million euros per season.
The league is home to Bayern Munich, which won the Champions League in 2013 after beating fellow countrymen of Borussia Dortmund. Bayern Munich won the national championship for the fifth consecutive time.
Reporting by Harro ten Wolde Editing by Jeremy Gaunt