Emirates seals World Cup inflight deal

Emirates, an official partner of this year’s FIFA World Cup, has bought the rights to the broadcast of every game from the 64-match tournament.The initiative means Emirates Airline’s in-flight entertainment service will broadcast “as live” the previous day’s matches beginning with Friday’s (9th June) opening game in Munich between hosts Germany and Costa Rica before closing with the final itself, which will be staged in Berlin on 9th July.

The deal - in association with official FIFA World Cup Middle East broadcaster ART - will provide Emirates passengers flying during the football fiesta with up-to-date action from the world’s biggest sporting occasion. And with Emirates also operating dedicated live viewing stations at 16 airports in ten different countries, football-loving passengers will miss none of the joy and heartache of a tournament set to be the biggest in sporting history.

Ghaith Al Ghaith, Executive Vice President Commercial Operations Worldwide, Emirates Airline, said, “This is an exclusive for Emirates as a FIFA partner and will be a valuable addition to our in-flight service, underlining Emirates’ position as a key international player in the 2006 FIFA World Cup.

“From a dedicated facility at Dubai International Airport, we will record and distribute full coverage of the previous day’s matches to every departing Emirates flight. In addition, while each match is being played we will also send a goal-by-goal update to each aircraft which we know will be appreciated by our passengers who want to keep up with the tournament as it happens.”

Developed by Emirates Passenger Communications, in association with Mercator and Emirates Engineering, the updates service will appear on the text news information channel alongside the BBC News Service. Updates will be sent to every aircraft in the Emirates fleet every time a goal is scored and at half time and full time with a short write-up on the match.

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The agreement to show delayed matches on all flights is the latest football initiative by Emirates, which recently signed up to continue as a FIFA Partner from 2007 to 2014 in a US$195 million deal marking the biggest sponsorship agreement in the airline’s history.
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