The best-case (and most likely) scenario after Cogeco announced it no longer had the rights to Montreal’s Major League Soccer team has come to pass. RNC Media’s 91,9 Sports announced on Tuesday it has signed a deal for radio rights to the team’s games for two years, with an option for a third.
Financial terms were not discussed.
The agreement is a boost for 91,9 Sports, becoming the first of the big three franchise rights it could wrestle away from 98,5fm. Until now, its biggest live broadcasting rights were for the Laval Rocket, the Canadiens’ American Hockey League farm team. (That deal ends at the end of this season.)
It’s also a win for the franchise, formerly known as the Montreal Impact and now called Club de Foot Montréal, which could get only some of its games on the radio with the Cogeco deal — when it didn’t interfere with news programming, or Canadiens or Alouettes games.
With 91,9 Sports, all regular-season and playoff games will be on the radio, along with 30-minute pregame shows and 30-minute postgame shows (an hour for games in Montreal)
The station announced it will also be adding more CF Montréal content to its schedule to go with this new partnership, including making its soccer show FC919 daily.
The on-air team will be announced “in the coming weeks” with a team that promises to be “young, dynamic, unifying and different.”
Other announcements are also being promised. With 91,9 Sports not knowing its future as recently as two years ago, it seems plans are finally being made for the future.
CF Montréal’s English radio rights are with TSN Radio 690, but the latest announcement of a rights deal ended in 2020 along with 98,5fm’s. Since there aren’t really other options, expect the team to remain with that station.