at the Stade de France, luxury production for a dream finale


The final of the European Champions League, a major annual sports and television event, attracts an audience of nearly 340 million viewers around the world. Depending on the country and the poster offered, the scores are higher or lower. But in recent years, the recorded audience in France has been disappointing.

The error of an illegible display for a match that is officially part of the “sports events of great importance”, which must be viewable on a non-paying channel. The final has often changed channels in recent years.

For the period 2018-2021, the exclusive holder of the broadcasting rights was the Altice group, parent company of the channel RMC Sport.

For the period 2018-2021, the exclusive holder of the broadcasting rights was the Altice group, parent company of the channel RMC Sport. In 2018, the Real Madrid-Liverpool FC final in Kiev was “sold” to C8, the free-to-air channel of the Canal+ group. Result: 3.7 million viewers. Disappointment. In 2019, the group repatriated the English derby Liverpool-Tottenham, played in Madrid, on their news channel BFM-TV. Result: 2.5 million fans on average, the lowest French audience for a Champions League final in ten years.

Different scenario in 2020, with the extremely rare presence of a French club in the final. For the controversial poster of PSG-Bayern in Lisbon, TF1, attracted by the prospect of record-breaking audiences, had bought the rights from Altice. A good calculation, with an average of almost 11.5 million viewers. By far the best crowd for such a final since 2004, the year of the last entry of a French club at the top, in this case AS Monaco, whose final against FC Porto had drawn 11 million supporters on TF1. In 2021, for Chelsea-Manchester City, in Porto, the choice of RMC Story was misleading and attracted an average of only 2.4 million viewers.

New battle plan

Change of gear this year, with the resumption of the rights of the prestigious European competition by the duo Canal+-BeIN Sports (until 2024). And a duel with the smell of revenge, between Real Madrid (winner in 2018) and Liverpool, with Karim Benzema at the top of the bill.

War in Ukraine mandatory, the 2022 final, initially scheduled for Saint Petersburg, has been transferred to the Stade de France in Saint-Denis (Seine-Saint-Denis). In just three months, the Canal+ group’s production team, appointed by UEFA for its expertise, had to develop a new battle plan. “I quickly offered UEFA a camera plan, but we are used to high production standards”underlines the experienced Laurent Lachand, director accustomed to major sports competitions, who had notably worked on Euro 2016, contested in France.

Also read: The final of the Champions League will take place in the Stade de France, and no longer in Saint Petersburg

For this final – the seventeenth of Real -, visible again on TF1 (and on RMC Sport), Canal + has unleashed the heavy artillery: almost 200 people will have impressive resources, with in particular forty cameras, including thirty-two positioned around the pitch , and a very sophisticated work of sound, to achieve an “immersive” system.

“The Stade de France is not a real football stadium, with its distant stands, but it is an open stadium, ideal for flying the Spidercam! †cheers Laurent Lachand, who, in addition to this “flying” 3D camera, will also have a helicopter to follow the arrival of the two teams near the Stade de France.

Match Liverpool FC-Real Madrid, live and easy to follow on TF1. Also broadcast on Canal+ and RMC Sport 1.